Articles Posted in DUI/OWI/DWI

Here are some articles to answer all your DUI questions:

Is there any place where you could legally drink and drive? The operating while intoxicated statute tells us where you cannot drive while intoxicated, but is there any place you could legally drink and drive? Read our article on Can I Drink and Drive in My Own Driveway? to answer these burning questions and more.

Self-driving cars? Flying Cars? The cars of the future may be closer than we think. Can you be in trouble for driving under the influence if the car is doing the driving and you’re just in the car? Read about the cars of tomorrow in Can You Get a DUI in a Self-Driving Car?

When a person is arrested for driving under the influence, the person’s blood is drawn and analyzed by the Michigan State Police. The State Police are looking for alcohol and drugs. There are a lot of different kinds of drugs out there, and the blood cannot be analyzed for every single kind at once. So the blood is analyzed for a little over 50 different types of drugs. The blood will be further analyzed for other drugs only at the request of the officer who arrested the driver.

These 50 drugs could be considered the top drugs that people are under the influence of when they are arrested for a DUI. Below is a list of the drugs and a short description. They are in alphabetical order, not the order of greatest frequency.

  1. 6-monoacetylmorphine (6-MAM) – This is a metabolite of heroin. The substance that remains  after heroin is used and broken down in the body.
  2. Acetyl fentanyl – An analog of the opiate fentanyl. It is estimated to be fifteen times stronger than morphine.
  3. Acrylfentanyl – An opioid analgesic that is analog of fentanyl. It is slightly stronger and has a longer duration than fentanyl.
  4. Alprazolam – Otherwise known as Xanax, a benzodiazepine prescribed to treat anxiety.
  5. Amitriptyline – A prescription medicine for depression and anxiety knowns as Elavil. Not a controlled substance.
  6. Amphetamine – A central nervous system stimulant. Prescribed for attention deficit disorder, narcolepsy, and obesity. Adderall may be one brand name for amphetamine prescriptions.
  7. Benzoylecgonine – The main metabolite for cocaine.
  8. Buprenorphine – An opioid drug.
  9. Butalbital – A barbiturate often used for headaches.
  10. Carfentanil – An opiate painkiller that is an analog of the opiate fentanyl.
  11. Carisoprodol – Soma. This is a muscle relaxant.
  12. Chlordiazepoxide – Used to treat anxiety and alcohol withdrawal.
  13. Citalopram – An anti-depressant medication.
  14. Clonazepam – A benzodiazepine commonly used to treat seizures.
  15. Cocaine – A stimulant. White powder.
  16. Codeine – An opiate painkiler.
  17. Cyclobenzaprine – Flexeril – used for muscle spasms.
  18. Diazepam – A benzodiazepine used to treat anxiety.
  19. Etizolam – A benzodiazepine.
  20. Fentanyl – An opioid painkiller. Very strong.
  21. Flubromazepam – A benzodiazepine.
  22. Flubromazolam – A benzodiazepine. Lasts up to 18 hours, a very long time for these types of drugs.
  23. Flunitrazepam – Known as Rohypnol, also known as roofies.
  24. Furanyl fentanyl – A fentanyl analog about a fifth the strength of fentanyl.
  25. Gabapentin – Drug used for neuropathic pain, which is pain caused by peripheral nerve problems.
  26. Hydrocodone – Painkiller. Known as Vicodin ad Norco.
  27. Hydromorphone – Dilaudid, a painkiller.
  28. Ketamine – A non-opioid pain reliever. Known as a dissociative anesthetic. Along with PCP, the only two drugs on this list in the dissociative anesthetic group. This type of drug causes pain relief in a different manner than opioid drugs.
  29. Lamotrigine – An anti-convulsant medication.
  30. Lorazepam – A benzodiazepine used to treat seizures.
  31. MDA – An ecstasy-type drug.
  32. MDMA – Ecstasy.
  33. Meprobamate – A benzodiazepine.
  34. Methadone – An opioid used for opioid dependence therapy.
  35. Methamphetamine – Stimulant drug.
  36. Midazolam – A benzodiazepine.
  37. Morphine – Opiate painkiller.
  38. Naloxone – A medication used to block the effect of opioids, especially during an overdose.
  39. Norbuprenorphine – An opioid metabolite.
  40. Nordiazepam – A benzodiazepine primarily used for anxiety disorders.
  41. Norfentanyl – A fentanyl analog.
  42. Oxazepam – A benzodiazepine.
  43. Oxycodone – Oxycontin. Painkiller.
  44. Oxymorphone – Opiate painkiller.
  45. Phencyclidine (PCP) – Hallucinogenic dissociative anesthetic.
  46. Phenobarbital – A barbiturate commonly used as anti-seizure medication.
  47. Phentermine – An amphetamine.
  48. Sertraline – Zoloft, a selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitor.
  49. Sufentanil – A fentanyl analog. An opioid analgesic.
  50. Temazepam – A sedative used to treat insomnia.
  51. THC-COOH – The metabolite from marijuana.
  52. Tramadol – A painkiller.
  53. Trazodone – Sedative and anti-depressant.
  54. Venlafaxine – Nerve pain medication and anti-depressant.
  55. Zolpidem – Ambien, to help insomniacs sleep.

The majority of these drugs are either anti-anxiety type medications or fentanyl-related painkillers.

A DUI can be dismissed – but we must put in some work first.

How to Get a DUI Dismissed

Many clients have this image of the defense lawyer rolling into court and speaking with the prosecutor in the backroom. They believe all the defense lawyer must do is explain to the prosecutor why the evidence against the client isn’t strong, and the case is dismissed.

The reality is the prosecutor will not simply dismiss the case because the defense explains why the case should be dismissed (unless the prosecutor is really cool). DUI laws are tougher than ever. And with that comes pressure on the prosecutor to bring these cases.

A Drug Recognition Expert is a police officer trained to determine whether a driver is impaired by drugs. The science behind what Drug Recognition Experts do is flimsy to say the least.

The officer is supposed to run a battery of tests on the driver to determine:

  • Whether the person’s ability to drive is impaired and,
  • Which type of drug has caused the impairment if unknown.

The officer may believe a driver is impaired by drugs but not know which type of drug has caused impairment. The driver’s blood sample will be tested by the Michigan State Police Laboratory for specific drugs.

A horrific crash in Florida highlighted the possible dangers and legal defense challenges of driving after huffing inhalant chemicals.

A man has been charged with driving while intoxicated and killing four people. Authorities say the man was huffing a Dust-Off can, an aerosol commonly used to clean computer keyboards, which contains the chemical difluorethane (DFE).  The man is claimed to have driven up to speeds of 107 miles per hour when he drove into the other car.

There is No Legal Limit for a DWI from Huffing

Everyone has heard of the legal limit for alcohol – a .08 blood alcohol content. No such legal limit exists for when people huff chemicals such as here.

We all know the legal limit for drinking and driving is .08. Let’s say you’re under .08 and pulled over by the police while driving. Will this prevent you from going to jail?

The .08 Number

Driving with a blood alcohol content of over .08 is against the law in Michigan. The law presumes that a person with a BAC of .08 or over is intoxicated. It doesn’t matter if the person is driving perfectly – if you’re over a .08, the law assumes you are intoxicated.

Many people know to stay “under the limit” when going out on the town and driving. A .08 BAC could be reached with three of four drinks, depending on a person’s size.

Anabolic steroids are controlled substances in Michigan. This means it is possible to be charged with driving under the influence of anabolic steroids.

Roid Rage = Road Rage = DUI?

Roid rage is the idea that people who take anabolic steroids are prone to increased combativeness and aggressiveness. The actual science behind this is spotty, but there is anecdotal evidence and the idea persists.

Could a driver who takes steroids and gets in a road rage incident be in trouble for a DUI?

In California last year a man was charged with driving under influence. The only substance in his system – caffeine.

The police officer observed erratic and reckless driving, and believed the man to be under the influence of drugs when the man was amped up and agitated. A drug test came back negative for all substances except caffeine.

The prosecution refused to drop the charges for almost a year, convinced the man must have been under the influence of something. Eventually, the charges were dropped.

In A Few Words

No, drinking and driving in your own driveway is against the law, with a possible exception discussed below.


This rule comes from the Michigan Supreme Court case of People v. Rea. The Court found that even a private driveway falls under the drunk driving statute.

In this case, Defendant Gino Rea drove his car out of his garage but was stopped by a police officer in the upper part of his driveway next to his house. Rea’s driveway began on the street, passed to the right of his home, and extended to a detached garage in Rea’s backyard. There was no physical barrier preventing access from the roadway onto the driveway.

In Michigan, it is against the law to operate a vehicle while intoxicated by an inhalant such as glue, paint, or other chemical agent.

What is an Inhalant?

A solvent chemical absorbed into the body through inhalation (huffing) is an inhalant.

Solvents are chemical agents often found in everyday household products. Such chemicals include benzene, toluene, chloroform, Freon, methanol, and other coolants, glues, and paints.

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