Per se marijuana DUI laws fly in the face of science. Marijuana can stay in someone’s system for over a month. So if someone is pulled over and it’s determined that there is marijuana in their system, in no way does that automatically mean that they were under the influence when they were operating the motor vehicle. All it means is that the person consumed marijuana at least once in the last month. DUI laws involving marijuana need to be impairment based. There needs to be additional evidence that someone was stoned behind the wheel.
Nevada’s medical marijuana industry is about to get off the ground. This has resulted in at least one Nevada District Attorney calling for reformed DUI laws. Per the Review Journal:
County District Attorney Steve Wolfson has joined a growing list of lawmakers, prosecutors and advocates saying state DUI marijuana law needs review at the 2015 Legislature to have some standard of impairment beyond a blood test.
“Everybody recognizes there needs to be a review of the law with regard to driving under the influence of marijuana,” Wolfson said. “Right now, the law is vague with regard to whether a person has ingested marijuana and whether that by itself means the person is impaired.”
Nevada is one of six states that have a per se limit for THC concentration in the blood, while 11 states have zero-tolerance laws for THC. In Nevada, the limit is 2 nanograms per milliliter of blood, or two parts per billion.
I don’t think I’ve had less than 2 nanograms per milliliter of blood since the mid 90’s. As I’m writing this article right now before I head to work, I haven’t consumed any marijuana since last night and I’m in no way intoxicated. However, if I was pulled over in Nevada right now I would be convicted of DUI. That’s just plain wrong.