December 23, 2020 | DUI
Because patient safety is a top concern for pharmacists, the Kentucky Board of Pharmacy considers alcohol abuse a serious problem. A pharmacist who receives a DUI may face criminal penalties. However, the pharmacist could also lose his pharmacist license.
Pharmacist Licenses and DUIs in Kentucky
A DUI arrest can have an impact on your pharmacist license. Even if the court dismisses the DUI charges, the Kentucky Board of Pharmacy could find that you have an alcohol problem. If so, it could suspend or revoke your license.
The Board Members may view your DUI as an indication that you may not be able to perform your duties and obligations. If you are drinking on the job, you could put patients and the general public in danger.
You are required to report any DUIs to the Board. If you fail to report a DUI arrest or conviction, the Board could revoke your license immediately.
However, if you self-report the DUI to the Board immediately, you could be eligible for intervention programs. The Pharmacist Recovery Network Committee promotes the early identification, intervention, treatment, and rehabilitation of pharmacists who may be impaired by alcohol use.
Working with the committee could increase the chance that you will be able to keep your pharmacist license, even though you may have a DUI conviction on your record.
What Should You Do if You Are Arrested for DUI?
Because you have a great deal at stake, considering you could lose your pharmacist license, your best option is to contact a Louisville DUI attorney immediately. Even though you have been arrested for driving under the influence, you are not guilty until the state proves its case. Additionally, you could have several defenses to DUI charges that could result in a dismissal of your charges.
Potential defenses to DUI charges include, but might not be limited to:
Lack of Probable Cause
A police officer must have a reasonable suspicion that a crime is being committed to make a traffic stop. Reasonable suspicion might include observing you weave in and out of traffic, driving too slowly for conditions, using turn signals incorrectly, or stopping for a green light. The officer could also pull you over because you have a burnt-out tail light.
However, a police officer cannot pull you over just because it is three o’clock in the morning or because you are driving away from a bar or club. If an officer pulls you over without probable cause, any evidence obtained during the stop could be thrown out of court.
Malfunctions With Breathalyzers
A breathalyzer must be calibrated correctly. The officer must also have training to operate the breathalyzer. If the instrument malfunctioned or the officer did not perform the test correctly, the breathalyzer results could be incorrect.
Also, there could be other reasons for a high BAC level. If you suffer from acid reflux, heartburn, or other diseases, the machine may give an inaccurate reading of your BAC. The officer should screen you for these conditions before administering the breathalyzer test.
Improper or Inaccurate Field Sobriety Tests
Officers often perform Field Sobriety Tests (FSTS) on the side of the road during a DUI stop. The tests assist the officer in determining whether the driver is intoxicated.
However, the tests must be administered according to very specific guidelines. Any deviation in the test could result in inaccurate results. Also, uneven pavement, the lights from oncoming vehicles, poorly lit roads, and other factors could make the results of the tests unreliable.
Chain of Evidence Issues
If the police officer collects samples of your blood or urine for a chemical BAC test, the chain of evidence is extremely important. When evidence is not adequately secured and handled, the chance of contamination increases. Also, your sample could be switched by mistake with another sample.
Errors in Testing Procedures
You can challenge the results of chemical tests. There could be problems with the equipment or the handling of the samples by the lab. If there were mistakes, the evidence could be thrown out.
You Were Not Driving the Vehicle
The state must prove that you were driving the vehicle to obtain a DUI conviction. If you were sleeping in your car or just sitting in your vehicle, it can be harder for the state to prove that you were driving under the influence of alcohol.
A DUI lawyer reviews all evidence in your case, including the details of your traffic stop, DUI arrest, questioning, and BAC testing. If there were any errors, your attorney could use those errors as support for a motion to dismiss the charges. Working with an experienced criminal defense lawyer may be one of the best steps you can take to protect your pharmacist license.
To learn more, call our Louisville criminal defense law firm at (502) 371-7000 or visit our contact us page to send us an email.