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Case Studies

Here we give examples of our recent work in the form of case studies.

Please follow the links below to read each study.

Drink/driving

My client was stopped by the police and accused of driving under the influence of drugs. Can you calculate what the alcohol concentration would be at the time of incident and comment on the combination of diazepam and alcohol?

Q.

Client observed driving on the wrong side of road. She was stopped by police and client appeared nervous and agitated. She informed police that she had drunk two tots of spirits earlier and taken 20 Valium tablets. She had a positive alcohol breath test.

18.30

Arrested and taken to Police Station.

18.50

In the police station, the alcohol breath test results were 41 and 39 mcg/100 mL (= blood alcohol of 92 mg/100mL).

19.05

FIT was carried out by Medic because client had condition which may be due to drink or drugs.

19.59

Pupils: 5.5 mm in both eyes; Mod Romberg: 24 secs; Walk and Turn Test: two false starts and missed 3rd and 8th step; One leg stand: Right, fell once, left OK; Finger to nose test: Failed on all 6.

20.05

A blood sample was taken and measured for benzodiazepines. Results were diazepam = 0.82 mg/L and desmethyldiazepam = 0.27 mg/L.

20.10

Trial set for two-three months later.

20.49

Based on drink history supplied by client and back extrapolation of blood alcohol, the level at the time of arrest could be 66-81 mg/100mL. Also it has been reported that the average diazepam concentrations in RTA where diazepam is known to have been taken are 0.20 to 2.67 mg/L. FIT showed impairment so combination could be responsible. At trial, solicitor and expert queried not guilty plea and in the end suggested pleading guilty with extenuating circumstances.

A.

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