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Marijuana & Driving

Defense Lawyers for Marijuana While Driving Offenses in Parker, CO

Helping Those Charged with a DUID in Dougals County, Castle Rock, and the Denver Metro Area

The legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado, which took place in 2012, has complicated driving rules in the state. While marijuana consumption is legal, operating a vehicle while under the influence of marijuana is not, which leads to a complex situation that law enforcement and citizens must navigate.

According to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Colorado has seen increased traffic fatalities since recreational cannabis laws were passed. Furthermore, the Colorado Department of Transportation has warned that the chances of a traffic accident are doubled when driving under the influence of THC, the main psychoactive component of marijuana. 

As a result, the penalties for marijuana-related driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) are serious and well-enforced. 

At Fuller & Ahern, P.C., our defense attorneys have substantial experience handling these cases, and we bring invaluable experience to clients arrested for these offenses throughout Colorado. With decades of criminal defense practice, including conducting numerous jury trials, and former prosecutors on board, we are uniquely situated to assist you and we will aggressively defend your rights and work to protect your freedom and future. 

Arrange for a free case assessment with a Parker attorney for driving under the influence of marijuana by calling (720) 712-2972 for an appointment.

  • “I knew his actions were in my best interest at all times.”
    I was confused, scared and grieving. I sat down to interview a lawyer named BRIAN CLOSE, at Susan Fuller & Assoc. I instantly felt the professionalism and knowledge this man had in many aspects of law. Divorce, civil, common law and more. I want to say the comfort I felt by placing my case in his hands was an overwhelming relief as I moved through a very challenging divorce and civil suit. I was challenged at every angle. Brian never made me feel intimidated nor insecure in decisions I had to make. Brian Close always took the time to explain my case and covered every angle. At times I just wanted to give up and give in. He took the time to make sure I understood everything that I didn't understand. I knew his actions were in my best interest at all times. With that, I hung in there and the day my cases were settled, I was overwhelmed with relief and success. This was a direct result from working with such a professional. The entire firm welcomed me and I can't say enough about everyone at the firm who conferred on my case. Right down to the paralegals and front office. Thank you for making this chapter of my life safe and secure under your direction.
    - Tami P.
  • “I could write a book waxing on about his expertise, and professional and kind demeanor.”

    Great legal services were provided to my daughter and I during her dissolution of marriage, and a couple of related matters after that. Our Attorney, Brian Close, was fantastic! I could write a book waxing on about his expertise, and professional and kind demeanor. The office's supporting staff were always professional and helpful as well. It feels like the office works together to provide the help and legal support needed during difficult times. I am extremely grateful that we were able to be represented by Brian Close of Fuller & Ahern, P.C.!

    - Carol A.
  • “James is very calm and wants his clients to feel at ease by providing expectations ahead of time.”
    I definitely recommend the Fuller & Ahern law firm. From the beginning, James worked very hard to ensure my side was heard by the district attorney. He worked behind the scenes to help navigate me out of the criminal system. It is evident he has a lot of experience and is very smart. Facing any type of criminal charges is very scary and life-changing. Going to the courtroom can be daunting. James is very calm and wants his clients to feel at ease by providing expectations ahead of time. He assesses the situation and continuously works to ensure his clients get the best deal possible. Clients shouldn't expect a lot of face-to-face time but should be confident he is doing his job. I am so thankful for his help, expertise, and willingness to quickly take on my case.
    - Lauren L.
  • “James was a true professional while keeping a personal touch.”
    I reached out to James Ahern at Fuller & Ahern, P.C. for legal trouble I was involved in. I was inexperienced and needed direction. Once James became involved, he guided me through the legal proceedings and gave me advice and possible outcomes throughout our work together. James was a true professional while keeping a personal touch. I would highly recommend James to anyone going through legal troubles.
    - Mark M.
  • “I am very grateful for his dedication and care with my case.”
    “So thankful I found this amazing law office! Brian Close is off-the-charts intelligent, I would actually say he is a genius at what he does.”
    - Mary A.

Legal Limit of THC

In terms of marijuana, Colorado law has established a legal limit for delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the blood. If you have five nanograms of THC per milliliter in your blood while operating a vehicle, then it gives rise to a permissible inference that you are under the influence of marijuana.  It does not matter if you ingested marijuana recreationally or for medicinal purposes. 

However, no firm agreement exists within the scientific community on how a specific level of THC in your blood relates to impairment. Thus, law enforcement officers can arrest you based on observed impairment, not the level of THC in your system. 

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Colorado Penalties for Driving While Under the Influence of Marijuana

Driving under the influence of marijuana is charged as a misdemeanor. If you are convicted, you will face the same general penalties as those associated with driving under the influence of alcohol. You can be charged with a DUID based on having the THC limit or higher in your system or a DWAI based on being visibly impaired, as reported by law enforcement. 

Penalties can include:

  • First DUI or DUID Offense: Five days up to one year of jail time, fines of $600 up to $1,000, community service of 48 to 96 hours, probation of up to two years, and a license suspension of nine months; you may avoid jail time with drug assessment and education. 
  • First DWAI DWAID Offense: Two days up to 180 days of jail time, fines of $200 up to $500, up to two years of probation, 24 to 48 hours of community service, and potential avoidance of jail time with drug evaluation and education.

Each succeeding DUI or DWAI within five years will result in steeper penalties with fines reaching up to $1,500, a mandatory jail sentence, includingjail time of 60 days up to a year, two to four years of probation, and two years of a license suspension. 

A fourth DUI or DWAI is a Class 4 felony charge, punishable by two to six years in state prison and fines ranging from $2,000 to $500,000. 

Impact on Future Prospects

A marijuana DUI conviction can have far-reaching implications for your future. It can affect job prospects as employers may not hire individuals with a criminal record. Housing options may also be limited, as landlords often perform background checks. Future educational opportunities could be affected as some colleges and universities may not admit students with criminal histories. Additionally, a conviction may disqualify you from a professional license in your career of choice. 

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