Drug charges can be broken up into many different types of categories. This can include possession, intent to distribute, and trafficking. While intent to distribute and trafficking are offenses in which the person has chosen to involve others, possession charges can tell a much different story.
If you have been charged with drug possession, you need the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Because possession is just the first step in the possession-intent-distribution process, it is often not taken lightly. Whether or not you had the intent to distribute these drugs, a possession charge can result in some very serious consequences if it is not handled correctly. With the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney, like the ones at Pak & McRae Law, LLC, you can move forward feeling confident in the outcome of your case.
What classifies drug possession?
The specifics of drug possession vary across state to state, but the definition stays relatively the same. Possession means that a person is willfully withholding illegal drugs. These could include but are not limited to marijuana, heroin, methamphetamines, LSD, cocaine, and many other types of drugs.
Possession charges can vary based on a lot of different factors. The first taken into question is whether or not there was intent to sell—this elicits a new type of charge. Second, the type of drug will be taken into consideration. Not all drugs are charged with the same severity. Third, the amount of illegal drugs in the person’s possession will be considered. If a person is carrying a high volume of drugs, their charge may be much more severe than if it were a minuscule amount.
Possession of drug paraphernalia can also be considered in these types of charges. In fact, a person can receive a possession charged just based on paraphernalia, even if they did not have any drugs themselves. This can also apply to chemicals that are considered the precursor to drugs or drug manufacturing.
How will they prove possession?
In drug possession cases, it will be up to the prosecutors to prove guilt. The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person was aware of the drugs. A possession charge will not be successful if the defendant was unaware of the presence of the drugs. For example, if a person is driving their friend’s car—in which there is cocaine under the driver’s seat—they may have been unaware that this drug existed. However, if the driver had the cocaine in his or her pocket, possession will be easier to prove.
Possession charges can also fall under the classification of “constructive possession”. This means that, while a person may not be carrying the drugs on their person, they can still be charged with for having access to this drug. Constructive possession can often be difficult to prove. It is easiest to prove in cases in which large amounts of drugs and drug paraphernalia are in question.
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What are the different types of possession?
In a general sense, there are two different type of drug possession: Simple possession and possession with the intent to distribute. (Learn more about intent to distribute by visiting our Possession with Intent to Distribute practice area page.) Simple possession charges are often much less severe than those that include the intent to distribute. However, no matter the potential severity of your charge, if you have been charged with any type of drug possession, it is advised to seek the legal guidance of a criminal defense attorney.
At Pak & McRae Law, LLC, we want to help you through this difficult time. You may or may not have made a mistake, but you have found yourself in this unfortunate situation. With the help of one of our experienced attorneys, we can help you through the criminal defense process. Call us today.