Apr 252014

By Linda Kor
An Arizona Supreme Court ruling this week notes that drivers having a long lasting metabolite in their system as a result of using medical marijuana may not be charged with a DUI.
The justices ruled on April 22 that individuals who test positive for the metabolite Carboxy-THC cannot be presumed to be driving impaired simply because traces of the drug remain in their bloodstream, without evidence of actual impairment.
The ruling also provides protection against impaired driving charges for anyone else who drives and has used marijuana in the last 30 days, including those who might be visiting from Washington or Colorado, where recreational use of the drug is legal.
This ruling does not apply to the presence of Hydroxy-THC, which remains in the system only a short period of time before converting to Carboxy-THC, and may be an indication of impairment. Arizona is one of at least seven states that have had a zero-tolerance ban on driving with any controlled substance or its metabolite in the body.