Voters passed measures that legalized small amounts of marijuana in both Colorado and Washington. Now, officials are preparing for an influx of drivers under the influence.
“We’re going to have more impaired drivers,” Greenwood Village police chief John Jackson said.
Colorado police may have nabbed their first culprit following the passage of Amendment 64 near the University of Colorado – Boulder campus in mid-November. Police responded to a call about a parked car with its engine running near the university’s police station. They found Gregg Nelson, 60, asleep behind the wheel. A joint, a lighter and brownie crumbs were scattered on his lap. Nelson later admitted that he bought the brownie from a medical marijuana dispensary in Denver.
Nelson reportedly had difficulty talking, and he pushed buttons on his dashboard when police asked him to turn off the car. He tried to remove his seatbelt that he had already removed, and he could barely stand on his own.
Nelson, a Florida resident, told police that he drove to Colorado to obtain medical marijuana for his back pain. He said he planned to “drive to the mountains,” but somehow ended up in Boulder. His car also had damage that matched markings on a nearby bridge. Police ticketed him for suspicion of driving under the influence.
“Even as Amendment 64 becomes law, it does not mean you can drive under the influence of a drug,” said CU police spokesperson Ryan Huff. “It’s just as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol, and the penalties are the same.”
Fortunately, this obviously intoxicated driver did not cause a serious car accident. If you know someone hit by a drunk or drugged driver, talk to us. We offer free consultations to examine your case and explain how you can claim damages for your injuries or loss.
Metier Law Firm, LLC – Denver accident lawyers