On May 16, the New Mexico Supreme Court oversaw a hearing on the subject of street cannabis testing.according to santa fe new mexican, Nina Luna Luna was pulled over by law enforcement officers in Albuquerque in 2018. In the report, police said Luna had red eyes, was slurred by her watery eyes, and smelled cannabis from inside her car.
Luna said she smoked “one drink” hours before driving, but police conducted an on-site breathalyzer test to determine if she had an alcoholic disorder. Luna was convicted of DUI and speeding after performing “badly” on a practical test.
In a recent Supreme Court case, Luna’s public defender argued that the field sobriety test she underwent did not adequately measure cannabis disorders and should not be admissible as evidence.
Luna’s lawyer also asked the Bernalillo County Subway Court to cover up the testimony because the officer was not a drug certification expert, but that request was denied.state district court control “A reasonable fact-finder could conclude that…” [Luna] She was so drug-affected that she could not drive a car safely. “
The State Court of Appeals similarly stated: Decided in 2021. “Performing an on-site breathalyzer test is a reasonable part of an investigation when officers have reasonable suspicion that the person was driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs… Defendant does not convince us that expert testimony by drug awareness experts is necessary,” the court wrote. Judge J. Miles Honeysy appeals.
In December 2022, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the case, leading to the events of the latest hearing on May 16. Luna’s appeals attorney, Luz Valverde, was questioned about evidence of disability. “What happens in a situation like this where there is overwhelmingly compelling evidence…was someone disabled?” Judge David Thomson asked.
In response, President Valverde said the evidence in Luna’s case was not convincing. “I do not agree … that the evidence is overwhelming, especially in light of recent research showing that it is very difficult to judge disability on the basis of disability. [field sobriety tests]’ said Valverde.
Valverde went on to argue that officers should be able to testify about their findings. ordinary person (or an unqualified person within the legal system) to make claims about who passed or failed, or that the size of the student is relative to the disability without any training. you shouldn’t.
Assistant Secretary of State Merrill Francolini opposed disqualifying an officer’s testimony for lack of training, and a 2021 appeals court ruling in the Florida case stated that on-site breathalyzer testing would be “unobservable by laymen.” It is an easy-to-understand test that can identify signs of functional impairment in
“Cops didn’t have to be cops” [drug recognition expert] If I testify in this case, and if there is a ruling to the contrary, I think it will lead to pretty dire consequences in the first instance. ” Francolini said.. “If this court finds that the police are untrained, [in drug recognition] It’s a slippery slope to know what the drug is because you smelled it and the defendant told you he used it, but you’re completely unqualified to associate the symptoms of the disorder with the drug. “
No ruling was handed down during or shortly after the hearing on May 16.
Validating cannabis disorders is not an easy task. A May 2022 study determined that THC detected in blood or breath tests was not indicative of functional impairment. A Canadian study in April 2021 highlights the need for an accurate method of detecting obstacles while driving. “We know that cannabis affects driving,” said lead author Sarah Windle of the study. “Cannabis detection does not always correspond directly to disability. It seems to depend on many factors, including the type of cannabis used and its potency.”
In February, Maryland police began inviting cannabis consumers to training schools to demonstrate driving impairment in exchange for water, snacks and pizza. “The participants are then used as test subjects for police officers to determine if someone is too expensive to drive. “Unlike people who can quantify disability with a moderate alcohol test, it’s harder to tell with cannabis.” Washington Post in the report.