21 May Marijuana DUI In Las Vegas
Marijuana was made legal for recreational use in Las Vegas last year. As of May 1, the City Council approved the operation of “marijuana lounges” where people would be able to smoke and use marijuana products legally, in order to solve the issue of only being allowed to use it in a private residence. Because tourists literally had nowhere to smoke the marijuana they had legally purchased, the city addressed the issue by creating regulated spaces much like bars. While these are not yet operational, they will soon provide a place where people can legally use the products they have legally purchased. This is a positive step, but it does lead to confusion by many as far as what they can and cannot do while they are in Las Vegas.
You can legally buy up to an ounce of marijuana in a dispensary as long as you are over 21 and have an ID. You can think about it much the same way as buying liquor, where you cannot drink the liquor outside the store you bought it, but you can buy it any time you want to. The same goes for using the product and then operating a motor vehicle, and the confusion as far as the legal limitations of marijuana use and intoxication are causing issues for many tourists. We have all heard about only drinking one drink per hour if you are driving, because more than that will put you over the legal limit for blood alcohol content. But how much marijuana can you smoke before you test over the legal limit?
Marijuana is not as easy to discuss as far as it’s use and operation of a motor vehicle as alcohol is. This is because there are many different strains of marijuana that are sold in the dispensaries, and they are going to effect people differently. If you are pulled over for suspected DUI and the police officer smells marijuana on your clothes or in the car, they are going to arrest you and take a blood sample. You are considered impaired in Las Vegas if your blood contains 2 nanograms per ml. of marijuana (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) or 5 nanograms per ml. of marijuana metabolite (11-OH-tetrahydrocannabinol). This is very difficult to gauge from the smoking standpoint, and it is almost impossible to predict if your blood will test over the legal limit if you have been smoking marijuana within the last 24 hours, there are just too many factors that can influence the test.
For this reason, it is important to not answer questions if you have been smoking marijuana within 24 hours before you were pulled over. The tests can be challenged by a seasoned marijuana DUI lawyer, and many times can be thrown out completely or reduced to a reckless driving charge. If you are convicted of marijuana DUI in Las Vegas, the penalties are the same as standard alcohol DUI. They will result in a suspension of your license, fines and fees, being forced to possibly do community service and other punishments. While a DUI first is not a felony, it is still not going to be pleasant if you are found guilty. This is why you need to call us if you have been arrested for marijuana.