A DUI charge isn't fully about what was used to become impaired; it's more about the way the substance affected you. To law enforcement, driving under the influence (DUI) charges are based on your behavior, your driving habits, probable cause, and more. If you are suspected of being under the influence of any substance, legal or not, the charges are generally harsh. Even legally-prescribed medications can impair some drivers enough to come to the attention of law enforcement.
Although it's easy to assume that a defendant charged with DUI or DWI is alleged to have operated a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, most states' statutes are not nearly so specific. In fact, defendants may be charged with (and convicted of) DWI even if the substance they were using prior to their arrest was legally prescribed, including sleeping pills like Ambien, prescription narcotics, or even allergy medication.
In the U.S. criminal law system, there are four core kinds of crimes. These are personal, property, incomplete, and statutory offenses. In each instance, the prosecution faces certain challenges in trying to prove their case. This article will take a look at each one from the perspective of someone who provides criminal law services.
A personal offense is one where the defendant is accused of wanting to harm another individual.