California has strong penalties for those convicted of possessing drugs and even harsher consequences for those convicted of possession with the intent to sell. When police are investigating these allegations, they will devote a large amount of resources toward finding those who supply the drugs to the street. They often arrest individuals in the hopes of gaining additional information which leads to more substantial targets.
If you have been arrested by police and facing drug charges, there are things you need to know about your case. Here are the important things to do immediately when facing drug possession charges:
- Get an attorney’s help as soon as possible. You want to avoid answering questions from police about anything at all in your case. You can invoke your right to remain silent and your right to legal representation. If you answer questions without an attorney present, you inadvertently could provide police more evidence in the case against you.
- Have your attorney review the evidence against you and seek additional evidence to defend against the drug charges you are facing. Perhaps, your attorney will discover police conducted an illegal search when they found the drugs. Or, the drugs recovered didn’t weigh as much as police claimed. Your attorney can advocate for you if an addiction treatment program would be a better alternative than serving jail time in certain circumstances.
- Abstain from using drugs and alcohol while your case is unresolved. You don’t want to end up facing additional drug charges before your first case goes to court. You want to be able to show the court that you are taking this matter seriously and getting the help you need.
You could be facing a misdemeanor conviction if you had cocaine, heroin, meth or Ecstasy. For simple possession of these drugs, you could spend up to one year in county jail. If you had enough drugs on you to reach a possession with intent to sell charge, you could have a four-year prison sentence.
Also, with a felony on your record, you could have a harder time obtaining employment and housing in the future. That’s why it’s important to defend your rights when facing drug charges, to work to avoid facing the harsh penalties that come with a conviction.