How Do Prosecutors Prove a Drug DUI in New Jersey?
Posted by Scott Gorman - March 31, 2023

If you got arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana (or any other drug) in New Jersey, you are facing several penalties. You may also be up against several forms of evidence, and you will need to build your defense based on the evidence that the police obtained during (and after) your arrest. Here, Morristown DUI lawyer Scott Gorman discusses five ways that New Jersey prosecutors can prove a “drug DUI,” as well as five ways that you may be able to overcome the government’s evidence against you.

5 Types of Evidence New Jersey Prosecutors Use to Prove Drug DUIs

In New Jersey, prosecutors can use several forms of evidence to prove a drug DUI. However, defendants will often have several defenses against each form of evidence as well. For example:

1. Police Officer Testimony

During your drug DUI trial, the police officer who arrested you may testify as to your driving behavior. If the officer testifies that you drifted out of your lane or were failing to maintain a consistent speed, these are facts that the prosecutor could use against you.

But, while police officers’ testimony can serve as evidence of guilt, their testimony isn’t necessarily the last word. If your lawyer can provide an alternate explanation for your driving behavior, this could be enough to prevent a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

2. Field Sobriety Test Results

Just like alcohol DUI cases, prosecutors can use field sobriety test (FST) results to prove a drug DUI. But, also like alcohol DUI cases, FST results in drug DUI cases are notoriously unreliable. If your lawyer can call the reliability of your FST results into question, this could also prevent prosecutors from meeting their burden of proof.

3. “DRE” Evaluation

After a drug DUI arrest, the police will typically take the suspect to the police station for evaluation by a “drug recognition expert” (or “DRE”). This is simply a police officer who has received some additional training in how to identify the effects of drug intoxication. Just like your arresting officer’s interpretation of your driving behavior and performance on the FSTs, your DRE’s analysis could suffer from a variety of flaws—and if your lawyer can expose these flaws, your lawyer may be able to help you avoid a conviction.

4. Urinalysis

At the police station, you may also be asked to provide a urine sample following a drug DUI arrest. While prosecutors will often rely heavily on suspects’ urinalysis results, the simple fact that you had a drug in your system does not necessarily mean that you were impaired at the time of your arrest.

5. Admissions of Guilt

Finally, if you admitted to driving under the influence, the prosecutors who are handling your case will almost certainly try to use your own words against you. But, while a confession can be strong evidence of guilt, not all confessions are valid, and not all confessions are admissible in court.

Request a Free Consultation with Morristown DUI Lawyer Scott Gorman

If you are facing a drug DUI charge in New Jersey, we strongly encourage you to contact us for a free consultation about your defense. To speak with Morristown DUI lawyer Scott Gorman in confidence, call 973-796-3800 or send us your contact information online today.

Published in Categories: DUI / DWI