(A) As used in this section:

Terms Used In Ohio Code 4511.194

  • Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
  • Person: includes an individual, corporation, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, and association. See Ohio Code 1.59
  • Probable cause: A reasonable ground for belief that the offender violated a specific law.
  • suspension: means the permanent or temporary withdrawal, by action of a court or the bureau of motor vehicles, of a driver's license, commercial driver's license, temporary instruction permit, probationary license, or nonresident operating privilege for the period of the suspension or the permanent or temporary withdrawal of the privilege to obtain a license, permit, or privilege of that type for the period of the suspension. See Ohio Code 4510.01
  • Testify: Answer questions in court.
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Whoever: includes all persons, natural and artificial; partners; principals, agents, and employees; and all officials, public or private. See Ohio Code 1.02

(1) “National highway traffic safety administration” has the same meaning as in section 4511.19 of the Revised Code.

(2) “Physical control” means being in the driver’s position of the front seat of a vehicle or in the driver’s position of a streetcar or trackless trolley and having possession of the vehicle’s, streetcar’s, or trackless trolley’s ignition key or other ignition device.

(B) No person shall be in physical control of a vehicle, streetcar, or trackless trolley if, at the time of the physical control, any of the following apply:

(1) The person is under the influence of alcohol, a drug of abuse, or a combination of them .

(2) The person’s whole blood, blood serum or plasma, breath, or urine contains at least the concentration of alcohol specified in division (A)(1)(b), (c), (d), or (e) of section 4511.19 of the Revised Code.

(3) Except as provided in division (E) of this section, the person has a concentration of a listed controlled substance or a listed metabolite of a controlled substance in the person’s whole blood, blood serum or plasma, or urine that equals or exceeds the concentration specified in division (A)(1)(j) of section 4511.19 of the Revised Code.

(C)

(1) In any criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding for a violation of this section or a substantially equivalent municipal ordinance, if a law enforcement officer has administered a field sobriety test to the person in physical control of the vehicle involved in the violation and if it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the officer administered the test in substantial compliance with the testing standards for any reliable, credible, and generally accepted field sobriety tests that were in effect at the time the tests were administered, including, but not limited to, any testing standards then in effect that were set by the national highway traffic safety administration, all of the following apply:

(a) The officer may testify concerning the results of the field sobriety test so administered.

(b) The prosecution may introduce the results of the field sobriety test so administered as evidence in any proceedings in the criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding.

(c) If testimony is presented or evidence is introduced under division (C)(1)(a) or (b) of this section and if the testimony or evidence is admissible under the Rules of Evidence, the court shall admit the testimony or evidence, and the trier of fact shall give it whatever weight the trier of fact considers to be appropriate.

(2) Division (C)(1) of this section does not limit or preclude a court, in its determination of whether the arrest of a person was supported by probable cause or its determination of any other matter in a criminal prosecution or juvenile court proceeding of a type described in that division, from considering evidence or testimony that is not otherwise disallowed by division (C)(1) of this section.

(D) Whoever violates this section is guilty of having physical control of a vehicle while under the influence, a misdemeanor of the first degree. In addition to other sanctions imposed, the court may impose on the offender a class seven suspension of the offender’s driver’s license, commercial driver’s license, temporary instruction permit, probationary license, or nonresident operating privilege from the range specified in division (A)(7) of section 4510.02 of the Revised Code.

(E) Division (B)(3) of this section does not apply to a person who is in physical control of a vehicle, streetcar, or trackless trolley while the person has a concentration of a listed controlled substance or a listed metabolite of a controlled substance in the person’s whole blood, blood serum or plasma, or urine that equals or exceeds the amount specified in division (A)(1)(j) of section 4511.19 of the Revised Code, if both of the following apply:

(1) The person obtained the controlled substance pursuant to a prescription issued by a licensed health professional authorized to prescribe drugs.

(2) The person injected, ingested, or inhaled the controlled substance in accordance with the health professional’s directions.

Effective Date: 01-01-2004; 09-23-2004; 08-17-2006.