Marijuana Law – Keyed to Mikos
Arizona ex rel. Montgomery v. Harris
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Hrach Shilgevorkyan was stopped by a police officer for speeding and making unsafe lane changes. The officers suspected that Shilgevorkyan was impaired and administered a sobriety test. Shilgevorkyan admitted he smoked “weed” the night before and, thereafter, agreed to a blood test, which revealed Carboxy-Tetrahydrocannabinol (“Carboxy-THC”), a non impairing metabolite of marijuana. Shilgevorkyan was charged with two counts of driving under the influence: (1) driving under the influence of any drug and (2) driving a vehicle while there is any drug or metabolite in the person’s body. Shilgevorkyan moves to dismiss count two alleging he did not have a metabolite in his body because he did not have Hydroxy-THC. An expert testified that marijuana is composed of many types of metabolites, and Hydroxy-THC and Carboxy-THC are two of the main metabolites. Also, it is possible to test Hydroxy-THC in an individual’s blood, however, the Arizona Department of Public Safety does not run that test because the Hydroxy-THC does not remaining the blood for a long time. Therefore, the State tests for Carboxy-THC, which can remain in an individual’s body for twenty-eight to thirty days after the marijuana was ingested.
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