There is no disputing that operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs (including opioids) or alcohol is a recipe for disaster. Drunk and drugged driving can lead to serious accidents, personal injuries, and criminal charges for the offending driver.

Likewise, Calgary police are cracking down on drunk and drugged driving, and if an officer stops you, they can place you under arrest. A conviction can land you in jail and/or subject you to other serious criminal fines and penalties. A conviction for drugged driving can result in serious penalties under the Criminal Code of Canada. If you face charges for drunk or drugged driving in Calgary, you need a criminal defence lawyer who will effectively represent your interests in the courtroom and help you sustain the best possible outcome in your case. The impaired driving lawyers at Bourdon Defence can review the facts of your case and fight for your legal rights in court.

The Standard for Determining Intoxication

If a Calgary police officer who pulls you over reasonably believes that you are under the influence of drugs, including opioids, he or she may demand that you undergo an evaluation. If you refuse to undergo the evaluation, you can sustain criminal charges that will subject you to the same criminal penalty as driving a vehicle while impaired. These evaluations are similar to the standard field sobriety tests which Calgary police officers use in the drunk driving context. For example, an evaluator will likely test the driver’s blood pressure, pulse, body temperature, and other vitals that could point to his or her level of intoxication. The evaluator will also likely measure the driver’s pupil size under varying light conditions. If the evaluator is able to determine that the driver is impaired—and he or she is able to identify the category of drug—then the driver can be charged accordingly on the spot. If, after the evaluation is complete, the evaluator determines that the driver is under the influence of opioids or some other drug, he or she will demand that the driver provide a bodily fluid sample. That sample typically takes one or more of the following forms:

  • Blood sample
  • Urine sample
  • Saliva sample

The purpose of the bodily fluid sample is to confirm or refute the evaluator’s findings as to intoxication. Again, if the driver fails to provide the bodily fluid sample, he or she can be subject to the same penalties as in an impaired driving case.

Call a Calgary Criminal Defence Lawyer Today

A person can be charged with and arrested for drugged driving even if the drugs are prescription drugs. If you are facing impaired driving charges in Calgary, the criminal defence lawyers at Bourdon Defence may be able to help. Our experienced team of lawyers can examine your case from every angle and represent your legal interests in the courtroom. To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with a Calgary criminal defence lawyer, please call us today at (403) 474-4143, or contact us online.