Tampa Drug Possession Lawyer
Florida imposes some rather strict penalties for drug cases, including drug possession. While drug possession cases generally aren’t as serious as many other drug offenses, such as distribution, trafficking or manufacturing, this type of offense can still result in penalties such as jail time and hefty fines.
The possible penalties for drug possession vary quite dramatically depending upon the amount of drug and the type of drug that you’re allegedly found to possess. For example, a count of simple possession for a small amount (20 grams or less) of marijuana may be prosecuted as a first-degree misdemeanor. Meanwhile, possession of cocaine and other “heavy” drugs can be prosecuted as a third-degree felony.
If you’re accused of drug possession in Tampa, Plant City, Brandon or another nearby community, you can benefit from contacting a lawyer as soon as possible. This can maximize your chances of seeing a prompt, favorable conclusion.
A Drug possession defense lawyer from Go2Attorney.com is a former prosecutor-turned-defense lawyer who has been in practice for nearly a quarter-century. His experience includes time with the Florida State Attorney’s Office as a narcotics prosecutor. This experience has been key for we know precisely how prosecutors operate, thereby increasing your chances of seeing a positive case resolution.
Before he started accruing legal victories, your lawyer was victorious on the race track managing a professional race driver. While racing, we won a championship in Outlaw Sprint Cars – all in addition to developing a respect for the essential nature of a strategic game plan. Today, he’s available to serve as the MVP of your legal team.
The legal system never sleeps, so we are available 24 hours a day to clients, who receive our personal cell phone number. This is just one example of commitment to clients like you.
If you or a loved one are charged with drug possession, your Tampa defense lawyer is here to assist. Schedule a free, confidential case consultation by calling 813-933-6807.
Common Questions Surrounding a Drug Possession Arrest in Tampa, Florida- FAQ
As a top Tampa drug defense lawyer, your attorney answers many questions from clients who are facing serious drug charges. Here’s a look at some of the most common queries that he addresses.
What’s the Definition of Drug Possession in Florida?
[Image: Tampa Drug Possession Lawyer] Florida law specifies a couple of different types of possession which can lead to an arrest for drug possession. As the name implies, actual possession refers to a scenario whereby the individual is in actual possession of the substance. An example would be holding a bag of marijuana in your hand or keeping a packet of cocaine in your pocket. With actual possession, the substance must be within reach and within the person’s control.
The other type of possession is constructive possession, which is a bit more challenging for the prosecutor to prove. In the case of constructive possession, the illicit drug is not on the defendant’s person. The prosecution is required to prove two elements:
- The defendant knows the substance is present; and
- The defendant has the ability to maintain control over the substance.
One example of constructive possession would be a case involving a bag of drugs that is placed beneath the seat in a car where you’re a passenger or between the cushions on a couch where you’re sitting. This type of drug possession can be more challenging for the prosecution to prove and easier for the defense case to plant the seeds of reasonable doubt.
How Does the Prosecution Get a Conviction for Drug Possession?
To secure a drug possession conviction, the prosecutor must offer evidence that the substance in question is actually a controlled substance under Florida law. Typically, the drug is subjected to laboratory analysis and testing, which is admitted as evidence. The prosecutor is also tasked with presenting evidence that proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knew or should to have known that the illicit drug was A) illegal and B) present.
Additionally, the prosecutor must prove possession by offering evidence or testimony that suggests that the defendant was in control of the substance or in control of the location where the drug was discovered.
Will I Have to Go to Jail for Drug Possession?
Generally, a first-time offender will not serve jail time, although there are always exceptions as every case is unique. The seriousness and penalties associated with a drug crime vary depending upon:
- Your criminal history and whether you have previous drug convictions;
- The type of drug involved;
- The amount of the drug involved; and
- Other factors, such as whether it appears you intended to sell the drug or whether there was some element of violence in your case.
Avoiding a Conviction Diversion and Drug Court
The Florida State Attorney’s Office does offer a pre-trial diversion program to many first-time, non-violent defendants who are arrested for drug possession. If you enroll in the program, you’re required to check in periodically with a supervising officer, in addition to submitting to drug testing, performing community service and staying out of legal trouble. If you complete the program, the prosecution agrees to drop the charges, allowing you to avoid a conviction.
Other cases may be prosecuted as a misdemeanor, while others can be prosecuted as a felony. Both misdemeanors and felonies can carry penalties such as jail time and fines.
Hire a Drug Possession Defense Lawyer to Represent Your Case
Finding yourself arrested for drug possession can be embarrassing and stressful. Matters can be complicated further if you’re struggling with a substance abuse issue. But there is help.
We are here to guide you through this challenge, offering an aggressive legal defense against your drug possession charges and also guiding you toward professional help if you’re in need of treatment.
In many cases, we can resolve cases prior to the trial phase, with diversion program enrollments, plea agreements, charge downgrades and even case dismissals. And for those who do go to trial, you can be confident knowing you’re represented by a defense lawyer with thousands of cases – including hundreds of criminal trials – to his credit.
Don’t let a drug conviction rob you of your good reputation, your career, and your financial stability. Turn to one of the most experienced drug defense attorneys in the region by contacting us. Arrange a free, confidential case consultation by calling 813-933-6807.