Fresno drug possession attorney Michael McKneely understands that handling drug possession charges are an emotional process. He also knows that people are unfairly and wrongfully accused by law enforcement. With time spent as a prosecutor and as a defender, Mike understands the inner-workings of the court system. He can use his experience to choose the right drug defense your case needs to reach the best possible outcome for any drug possession charge. Call Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer today at (559) 443-7442 to see how Mike can help.
If you have been charged with drug possession, you may be worried about the criminal and collateral consequences of a conviction. Penalties can include fines and jail time, and you may be ineligible for certain employment opportunities with a California drug possession conviction on your record. Perhaps you were wrongly accused, or maybe your rights were violated at the time of your arrest. Whatever the case, your side of the story should be told. You deserve to have your rights and your freedom protected.
What is Drug Possession?
According to California Health and Safety Code sections 11350, 11375, and 11377 drug possession is possessing a usable amount of a controlled substance without a medical prescription. A substance is considered in your possession when it is either on your person or in your constructive possession. Constructive possession means having access to—or control over—a drug. It also implies that you are aware of its presence. Controlled substances include any drug that is regulated by the government according to the Controlled Substances Act. The list of controlled substances includes:
Interestingly, marijuana is covered by its own law, Health and Safety Code 11357. Similarly, synthetic stimulants are covered by Health and Safety Code section 11375.5 and ketamine by section 11379.2.
Penalties for Drug Possession in California
Drug possession, or simple drug possession, is generally a misdemeanor. Although misdemeanor drug possession may not have the same life-shattering penalties as a felony, it still carries consequences that should be avoided at all costs. The typical sentence for a drug possession conviction includes up to 1 year in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000. Drug treatment programs may also be required.
In most cases, it is possible to avoid spending time in custody at the outset. A skilled Fresno criminal defense attorney can make a case for drug diversion, a treatment program that is an alternative to jail time. If you have been convicted of a serious felony in the past, drug possession may be charged as a felony. This crime carries a sentence of 16 months, 2 years, or 3 years in county jail.
With the help of a knowledgeable and experienced criminal defense lawyer in Fresno, many strategies may be available to prove your innocence and defend your freedom. To speak with a criminal defense attorney from Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer today, call (559) 443-7442.