Is Driving High a DUI in Missouri? 

In recent years, the legalization of marijuana for both medical and recreational use has prompted questions about the legality of driving under the influence of cannabis. 

Missouri, like many other states, has stringent laws in place to address impaired driving, including driving under the influence of marijuana. Driving high can result in a DUI charge (DWI in Missouri), just as driving under the influence of alcohol can lead to a drunk driving charge. 

It’s important to understand that even if you have a medical marijuana card or are in a state where recreational marijuana is legal, you can still face legal consequences for impaired driving.

The 21st State to Legalize Adult Use of Marijuana

In November 2018, Missourians voted in favor of Amendment 2, which allows individuals with qualifying medical conditions to access medical marijuana. The amendment went into effect on December 6, 2018, making Missouri the 21st state to legalize medical marijuana. 

More recently, adult use of marijuana became legal. On November 8th, 2022, 53% of Missouri voters supported the law and as of December 8th, 2022 consumers can now possess up to three ounces of marijuana and buy marijuana at local dispensaries.

How Do DWI Laws Apply To Marijuana?

Operating a vehicle while under the influence of marijuana raises questions about the potential legal consequences, particularly concerning driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges. 

In Missouri, the issue of whether a person can be charged with a Missouri DWI offense for driving while intoxicated by marijuana is multifaceted. We emphasize that driving under the influence of any impairing substance, including marijuana, can result in a DWI charge if it is proven that the individual’s ability to operate a vehicle safely is significantly impaired. 

While alcohol intoxication can be measured by blood alcohol concentration (BAC), determining impairment due to marijuana requires different methods, such as field sobriety tests and drug recognition evaluations.

According to Article XIV of the Missouri Constitution, driving or operating any motor vehicle while under the influence of marijuana is not permitted.

Impairment and THC Levels

The key issue in a marijuana DUI case is impairment. Law enforcement officers may use field sobriety tests and drug recognition experts to assess impairment during a traffic stop. 

Additionally, chemical tests may measure the presence of THC metabolites in your system. It’s important to note that a high THC level or the presence of marijuana metabolites can lead to a DUI conviction, potentially resulting in jail time, license suspension, and other penalties.

Consult with a DUI Lawyer

If you’re facing a marijuana DUI charge in Missouri, make sure to consult with an experienced DUI lawyer

At the Law Offices of Brian J. Cooke, we provide DWI defense can provide you with a case evaluation to understand the specifics of your situation. We have a thorough understanding of marijuana DUI laws and can develop a strong defense strategy tailored to your case.

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