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Bath Salts linked to Local DUI Charges

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Lebanon woman, 38, driving on bath salts arrested with toddler in car, police say

SARA GANIM, The Patriot-News Posted: 04/25/2011 12:17 PM

Reviewed by Attorney Elisabeth Pasqualini, Criminal Law Division Leader

 
  A 38-year-old Lebanon woman was arrested Sunday after police said she was driving under the influence of bath salts with an 18-month-old child in the back seat of her Mercedes Benz.

The Patriot-News/fileOther drivers on state Route 72 in Union Township, Lebanon County, called 911 around 6:40 p.m. yesterday to report an erratic driver that had run a red light and was banging her head against the steering wheel.

The trooper who caught up with Lori Ann Rudegreair said he watched her 2003 E500 leave the road and almost hit a guardrail. Rudegreair, of Lebanon, was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital for a blood test. The child in her car was taken to the state police barracks and released to a family member.

Rudegreair is charged with driving under the influence of drugs, recklessly endangering another person, and several other related charges.

  • Bath salts are a legal concoction that mimics methamphetamine. They're not the same bath salts that one uses in a tub.

Review by Attorney Pasqualini-

The legal definition of Driving Under the Influence does NOT contain a reference to a legal substance.  Bath Salts or mephedrone and MDPV methyllenedioxypyrovalerone) are the chemical compounds found in "bath salts" that create a euphoric feeling similar to cocaine and methamphetamines.  They are not yet listed in the state's statutes as a "controlled substance." 

The definition of DUI requires either that an individual be under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance or a combination of the two to such a degree that renders that person incapable of safe driving.  Bath salts are presently not listed as a "drug" or a controlled substance.  Therefore, the ability of the prosecution to sufficiently meet the legal requirements of the statute are sketchy.  Legislation has been proposed by the State House that would list the compound as a "controlled substance."

Contact us at www.shafferengle.com if you have questions or toll free at the above number.  You may contact Attorney Pasqualini directly at Elisabeth@shafferengle.com

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