In June, Illinois became the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana – legislation that will take effect January 1, 2020. Illinois residents 21 and older will be allowed to possess up to 30 grams of cannabis flower, 5 grams of concentrate, and 500 milligrams of THC in other products ranging from cannabis beauty and skin products to edibles such as chocolates and gummies.
The new law will also expunge the records of 800,000 people with Illinois criminal records for purchasing or possessing 30 grams or less of marijuana. Many offenders with nonviolent, cannabis-related records may qualify for automatic expungement, gubernatorial pardon, or seek individual court action to expunge their records.
In advance of the marijuana legalization law taking effect, law enforcement is getting ready to respond to what some see as the inevitable spike in impaired driving that has dogged other states that have legalized pot. Driving under the influence of alcohol or marijuana can result in legal consequences, more so if impaired driving results in an accident causing injury.
Because it is sometimes difficult to discern a driver’s THC impairment, according to local media outlets law enforcement departments across the state are “researching saliva based tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) testing; training cadets on Advanced Roadside Impairment Driving Enforcement (ARIDE), and increasing the number of Drug Recognition Experts on patrol.” Law enforcement efforts to get ahead of the problem will likely result in more Illinois DUI arrests in 2020.
In Illinois, it is presumed that a person is under the influence of cannabis if they have a THC concentration of 5 nanograms or more per milliliter of blood. If an officer suspects that a driver is impaired by cannabis, the driver must submit to field sobriety testing; those who fail may be charged with Illinois DUI. First offense Illinois DUI will likely result in the loss of a driver’s license for a period of up to six months. Subsequent DUI convictions or other aggravated offenses can increase the penalties substantially.
If you have been arrested for Illinois drunk or drugged driving, you need an experienced Illinois DUI lawyer to fight the charges. The law offices of Ronald L Bell & Associates P.C. provides skilled legal representation to those facing Illinois DUI driving offenses. Call 847-495-6000 to schedule a consultation with Lake county Illinois drunk or drugged driving attorney Ronald L. Bell for immediate help.