Being Under the Influence of a Controlled Substance in California

Sec 11550 of the Health and Safety Code of California defines the criminal act of being under the influence of a controlled substance. In order to be convicted under this offense, the following facts need to be present:

  • The individual willfully used or ingested a controlled substance or narcotic;
  • The individual, at the time of the arrest, must be under the influence of the said illegal or controlled substance.

The law provides the being under the influence means that the individual’s physical nature is affected in any manner by the said controlled or illegal substance. Furthermore, the law provides the specific controlled substances needed to fall within the purview of this law, which includes cocaine bases, opiates or opiate derivatives, methamphetamines and PCP.

A conviction under this offense would impose a minimum of ninety (90) days up to one (1) year of incarceration in county jail. There is a process though that instead of imprisonment, drug diversion or drug rehabilitation may be provided as an alternative option instead after compliance with a specific set of requirements.

The crime of being under the influence of a controlled substance is a serious offense in California. Should you be or know anyone undergoing this process, do reach out to the lawyers at the Law Offices of Ramiro J. Lluis for a free consultation today.