Most people associated DUI with excessive drinking followed by driving. Many people also believe drug DUI charges should be reserved for those who use illegal drugs. But, in Kansas, you can be arrested for DUI if you are under the influence of prescription drugs so that you cannot safely operate a vehicle. Kansas law 8-1567 states:
"Driving under the influence is operating or attempting to operate any vehicle within this state while under the influence of any drug or combination of drugs that renders the person incapable of safely operating the vehicle."
"Any drug" includes sleep aids, opioids, and antidepressants. In fact, they are common causes of prescription drug DUI's. Even though use of these and other medicines are necessary the fact that they were prescribed is not a defense.
DRUG SIDE EFFECTS & SAFELY OPERATING
To prove you were under the influence of a drugs, the officer likely put you through a battery of coordination tests prior to arresting you. He or she may have even requested, or demanded with a warrant, that you submit to a blood draw. Because the natural side effects of a prescription includes drowsiness, nausea, blurred vision, confusion, or dizziness, the government will argue that any lack of coordination was due to the use of drugs and prevented driving safely.
SPEAK WITH A DUI DEFENSE ATTORNEY
If you or someone you love has been charged with DUI, seek legal counsel as soon as possible. A DUI conviction comes with a range of consequences such as jail time, fines, license suspension, and more. Defending against these charges requires the advice of a skilled DUI defense attorney who can review your case, explain your defenses, and recommend the best path forward.