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Help with drug problem

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January 23, 2004, 14:57
Help with drug problem
Dwi with cocaine metabolites. I am having trouble getting info on the effects of cocaine and the duration of the effects on the body with a known amount of metabolite. Small jurisdiction with no expert to ask and the diagnostic center does not have a physician on staff. Do any of you have any contacts who could answer a few questions for me in this regard? The DRE says the def. was intoxicated, but he looks pretty good on video and only had .02 BAC. Recently read 84 sw3d 15 Manning v. State and the dicussion of the duration of the effects caused me concern.
January 27, 2004, 00:12
Jeff Swain
Maybe try the DPS Crime Lab in Austin, which I think is the only one that tests blood for the presence of narcotics. I am assuming that you have some type of blood sample that shows positive for cocaine. You may also have problems with getting some kind of quantitative figure for how much cocaine was present in the blood, as a typical hospital test will only be a screen for the presence, with additional testing being done only if a doctor requests it. Without that, unless you've got a witness or a confession to tell you how much was used and when, it'll be hard to determine the effect scientifically. Of course, it helps that your DRE guy says he was intoxicated. Additionally, if you just have a screen and no confirmation, I don't think you're going to be able to get it admitted, since most screening tools that I have heard of have false positives.

Good luck!
January 27, 2004, 08:28
Tim Cole
There's a Ph.D. who used to work in Bexar County ME's office now in private consulting who specializes in the effects of certain levels of controlled substances in the blood. He can take the quantification figure that you have (if you know you have metabolites I am assuming you also have a quantification, e.g. so much milligrams of drug per liter of blood). Expert's name is Dr. James Garriott, 210-695-9520. He might give you a quick opinion over the phone. Obviously if he reviews your casefile and testifies it's going to cost you.
January 27, 2004, 09:25
Thanks, I'll give that a try. I don't mind paying if the case is worth pursuing. 17,200 ng/ml cocaine metabolite in the urine sample. My DR is batting less than .500 when defendants have taken a test and the defense bar knows it so I must have all my ducks in a row on this one. PC for stop 68mph in a 65. Def looks good on video despite the allegations in the report(maybe leg tremors, eyelid tremors, etc. don't show up well on video).