or to vote comment and more!
New Jersey’s Supreme Court has declared the testimony of drug recognition experts reliable enough to be used as evidence, though they limited its use over concerns about such experts’ processes.
Wednesday’s decision is a partial defeat for the state Office of the Public Defender, which argued the case, and the American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey, which was among several groups that filed supporting briefs. It comes three months after a court-appointed special master found such testimony was reliable enough to act as evidence.
The New Jersey Supreme Court case that could decide how cannabis impairment is — or isn’t — measured by police is nearing a conclusion with multiple ramifications.
In question is the protocol and use of specially trained officers known as Drug Recognition Experts (DREs), who perform marijuana sobriety tests. The case, State v. Olenowski, involves the state Office of the Public Defender challenging the scientific validity of how police officers detect drug impairment, including on drivers suspected to be under the influence of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.