Sleep Driving

Sleep Driving - Ambien DUI

When doctors prescribe Ambien or Zolpidem for insomnia they may or my not inform their clients that one side-effect is sleep activities. Sleep: walking, eating, driving and memory loss. These side-effects are considered rare; however, many people are now charged with a DUI for driving under the influence of drugs like Zolpidem.

Can I be convicted of a DUI if I am sleep driving under the influence of Ambien?

More often police are looking for people driving under the influence of drugs including Ambien. Unfortunately people who are sleep driving get lumped in with others driving under the influence of prescriptions drug.

What is the difference between driving under the influence of pain medication and sleep driving?

Driving after taking most medications is a voluntary action - Sleep driving in an involuntary action. Sleep Driving is an unexpected and unwarned adverse effect of a drug taken on a doctor’s order is not a voluntary decision. If you a legally unconscious you are not responsible for your actions - A person is legally unconscious when she is not aware of their actions. Unconsciousness may be caused by sleepwalking. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were conscious and not sleepwalking.

Why will the District Attorney still prosecute me? Most DA offices still haven't been educated on why sleep driving cases are not a crime under 23152(a)

  • Someone is legally unconscious when he or she is not conscious of his or her actions.
  • Someone may be unconscious even though able to move.
  • Unconsciousness may be caused by a blackout or epileptic seizure or involuntary intoxication or sleepwalking.
  • If based on all the evidence there is a reasonable doubt that she was conscious she is not guilty.