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A drug recognition expert is a police officer who has been trained specifically to detect the presence of intoxication and illicit drugs in a suspect driver. These officers have undergone hours of training and field certification to be able to detect the presence of seven categories of narcotics; Depressants, Stimulants, Hallucinogens, Inhalants, PCP, Narcotic analgesics, and Cannabis in order to charge someone with driving under the influence of drugs (DUID)
Oftentimes drug recognition experts (DRE) are not the officers on the scene of a DUI drug arrest. Generally, an officer assigned to traffic patrol will make an arrest based on suspected DWI. Then the arresting officer may choose to take the suspect back to a police station and call in an “expert” to determine if the intoxication is alcohol or drug related.
Things a DRE Will Look For
To make his determination the expert officer will take many things into consideration. First, the officer will interview the arresting officers and ask them about the driver’s behavior and speech. Erratic behavior or trouble speaking may both be signs that a driver is on drugs. The investigating officer will also interview the driver. They may admit to doing drugs or the officer may notice some things about them tending to show intoxication.
The officer will administer several eye exams to the suspect. Similar to what an officer would do in a typical alcohol DWI stop. Along with the eye exams, suspects will be asked to do several sobriety tests including a balance test, a walk and turn test, and a finger-to-nose test. The officer will also take the driver’s blood pressure, heart rate. And temperature while feeling the arm muscles for indications of intoxication during a DUI stop.
If the officer still hasn’t figured out which drug category is causing the driver to be intoxicated then the officer will take the suspect into a dark room for further exams. In the dark room, the officer will track the size of the driver’s pupils in three different lighting conditions. The officer will also determine if the person’s pupil are responding normally to light stimulus.
Lastly, the officer will confront the driver about their suspected drug use. Generally, the officer will appear to be confident and already know what drugs the driver has been using. The officer will try and elicit a confession and if this does not work the officer will simply arrest the suspect and charge them with DUID.
Hiring An Attorney For Your DUID Case
If you are arrested for DWI in Texas you need to hire an experienced attorney to defend your rights. A conviction for DWI is a serious matter that could negatively affect your life for years to come. Make sure that if you have been charged with a DWI arising out of alcohol or drug intoxication you have an attorney retained to defend you. Even if your case seems hopeless your attorney may be able to get the charges reduced or even dismissed.
The attorneys at Texas Criminal Defense Group are very experienced in DWI defense and will defend your rights aggressively. Don’t put your future at risk and hire an experienced attorney today.