A court in Massachusetts has ruled that police can make arrests for drugged driving based on their personal observations. The state Supreme Judicial Court made the ruling on Monday in the case of Mark J. Davis, who was pulled over on the Massachusetts Turnpike and arrested by Massachusetts State Police in July 2015.
Troopers said that Davis had been driving at 80 mph and tailgating other motorists, according to the ruling. Davis, who was driving, and two passengers were in the vehicle. The car had a “strong odor of burnt marijuana and an odor of fresh marijuana,” according to media reports. The trooper said that Davis smelled like pot, too. Davis also had “red and glassy” eyes, which he had trouble focusing and struggled to keep open. The trooper also noted that Davis had difficulty following “simple directions.” He had also apparently admitted to recent cannabis use.
“The defendant told the officer that he had smoked marijuana earlier that day, before he left to drive to Somerville,” the ruling states.
Police then searched the car and found oxycodone, cocaine, and a firearm. Davis was arrested and later tried on drug possession, drugged driving, and gun possession charges. He was convicted of drug possession by