Drug Lawyer in Arlington, Virginia
If you’ve been arrested for drug possession, you should speak to a drug lawyer Arlington, VA residents trust from Dave Albo – Attorney. You are facing a serious charge, so you need someone knowledgeable and experienced on your side. A lawyer can help you build a strong defense and protect your legal rights.
Factors Involved in Drug Sentences
While it’s ideal to have your drug charge dismissed or to be found not guilty, sometimes it’s not possible. Here are several factors the judge may use when determining your sentence.
- Drugs involved: Charges may depend on the type and quantity of drugs involved, like marijuana, cocaine, heroin and ecstasy. Typically, there is a hierarchy of drugs that will be looked at when determining the punishment for a case. If it is a hard drug, there will likely be extensive jail time and fines. If it is marijuana or something that isn’t as strong, there may be minimal fines and limited to no jail time.
- Prior criminal history: As a lawyer can confirm, your criminal history will play a big role in your sentencing. Defendants with no prior criminal history will typically receive lighter sentences than repeat offenders.
- What was intended with the drugs: Often, if the drugs were meant to be consumed by the person who was caught with them, this is a much lesser charge than if they intended to distribute the drugs. This may be a lesser offense because it is often only hurting the individual using the substance, while distributing leads to a much larger operation that spans over many other people than drug use. It can be important, if you are accused of a crime, to sometimes offer more information to law enforcement about how you received the substance and when you have used it in the past. You never want to speak to law enforcement without a lawyer, though, as experienced drug lawyers know what kind of tactics work in court and what may not be so effective. You always have the right to hire a lawyer, so need to be sure to utilize that right. Your lawyer will always have your best interest at heart, while law enforcement and the judge are only looking at the rules in a rigid light.
No matter what kind of circumstances your drug crime arrest took place in, it is crucial that you retain legal assistance. Your drug lawyer in Virginia will know the drug laws in your state and be able to come up with the best plan for getting a minimal sentence, or even have it thrown out — particularly if you are a first time offender. Be sure to not speak with anyone until you have retained legal counsel, as anything you say can and will be held against you. You may think that you are just recounting the details of the incident, when in reality you are further incriminating yourself. This can be damage that is hard to undo once it is done, which is why it is crucial to have a good lawyer on your side. With Dave Albo — Attorney, you will be in good hands you can trust to take care of your best interest.
How a Drug Conviction Can Impact Your Life
Getting convicted of a drug crime can negatively affect your life in many ways, including:
- Difficulty Finding Employment: Many employers nowadays conduct background checks on candidates. They want to know that they can trust their workers. If you have a drug conviction on your record, you may have trouble obtaining positions in law enforcement, nursing, commercial driving and positions that require you to be around children.
- Trouble Getting an Apartment: The majority of landlords also conduct background checks on prospective tenants. They may be weary about renting an apartment to someone with a drug conviction because they assume the individual is untrustworthy and won’t pay rent on time. You may have a very difficult time finding a place of your own and have to live with family.
- Difficulty Getting Custody: If you’re in the middle of a child custody battle, a drug conviction can lower your chances of getting custody of your kids. The judge will frown upon a drug conviction and believe you’re unfit to take care of your children.
These are only a few of many issues that you can face, as a drug crime is considered a criminal offense. This means that you have a criminal record if you are found guilty. By hiring an experienced drug lawyer to attempt to throw out or diminish the charge, you are taking your future back into your own hands.
Possible Defense Strategies
Facing charges for drug possession can be scary, and can leave you feeling as though there isn’t any hope. Despite this situation feeling intense and overwhelming, remember that you still are considered innocent until proven otherwise. Because law enforcement is so zealous when making arrests, it may seem like you won’t be able to walk away unscathed. However, there are several defenses that your Virginia drug lawyer in Arlington can use to protect you. If we cannot get your charges dropped, we can still work to reduce the severity of the consequences.
Here are examples of defense strategies that your lawyer may use when building your case against the drug offense accusation:
- The drugs belonged to another person (friend, coworker, relative, etc.)
- The drugs were searched and obtained unlawfully
- The accused is a victim of entrapment by law enforcement
- Applying pressure to the prosecution to prove the drug was illicit (sometimes drug evidence gets lost in the process so the prosecution fails to bring it forward, or isn’t actually an illegal substance)
- The defendant did not know they were in the presence of illegal substances
The fourth amendment protects civilians in that they have the right to due process, and are not to be subjected to an unlawful search and seizure before an arrest. If law enforcement had obtained evidence illegally, the proof may be thrown out in court resulting in a drop of all charges immediately.
A common defense strategy used in drug cases is explaining that the drugs belong to another person close to you. Perhaps you have a friend or family member who uses illegal drugs but they happened to be on your person or in your home when law enforcement searched.
After consulting with you, they are likely to follow up with a testing of the substance confiscated from you. For example, a white pillowy powder may look like crack or cocaine, but it could easily be something else. If the crime lab commits an error when testing the drugs or determines it isn’t of an illegal nature, then the case may be dropped against you.
Law enforcement may get too caught up in their sting operations, that they commit entrapment by coercing someone into a crime that they otherwise would not have done under normal circumstances. Our team is well aware of just how desperate police can be when trying to catch someone in a crime, and can investigate the factors of your arrest to see if this may have happened to you.
Consulting a Lawyer
If you are facing a drug charge, it’s in your best interest to discuss your case with a qualified lawyer. He or she can fully assess your case and provide you with sound legal advice. For example, your lawyer may advise you on whether you should go to trial or accept a plea bargain. When speaking to your lawyer, be sure to be completely honest about everything. If you don’t provide all the facts, your lawyer can’t help you to the best of his or her ability.
Schedule a consultation with a VA drug lawyer in Arlington, call Dave Albo- Attorney today.