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Dallas NC Drug Possession Lawyer

Dallas NC Drug Possession Lawyer

Dallas NC Drug Possession Attorney

Drug possession charges are taken very seriously in Dallas, NC. If you’ve been arrested for possession of a controlled substance, it could be charged as a felony depending on the circumstances. Even a misdemeanor charge can lead to you receiving fines and jail time.

The Law Firm of Brent D. Ratchford: Your Lawyers for Drug Possession

It takes an experienced North Carolina drug possession attorney to navigate the legal system and fight to get your drug charges reduced or even dismissed. At the Law Firm of Brent D. Ratchford, we believe in treating our clients with respect. Our legal advice gives you the full picture of your circumstances and the likelihood of charge reduction. We’ll work with you to provide a strong defense case and determine your best legal options.

Dallas NC Drug Possession Lawyer

What Is a Drug Possession Charge?

Possession of a controlled substance in Dallas refers to willful and illegal possession of a drug or substance that’s illegal. Drug possession must be done knowingly, meaning the person is conscious of their possession or aware of it. Penalties for controlled substance possession vary based on the substance and the amount of it the person had.

Why Do I Need a Drug Possession Lawyer?

Drug charges are serious, and it’s not a situation you want to handle alone. Some situations require additional proof that you knowingly possessed the substance, such as if you didn’t have full control over the premises where drugs were found. Without an attorney, you’ll be arguing against the state’s prosecutor with an assigned public defender. Though public defenders are skilled at their jobs, they often have excessive casework that makes it difficult for them to devote the necessary care to your case. It takes a lawyer with years of defending drug possession charges to know the complexities of handling your case and advocating for the best outcome.

What Is a Controlled Substance?

Controlled substances refer to a regulated drug under federal or state law, usually a drug that is likely to be abused. They are placed under specific schedules based on their medical usage, the likelihood of addiction, and the potential for abuse:

  • Schedule I: These drugs have no medical use and a high potential for addiction and abuse. This includes PCP and LSD.
  • Schedule II: These substances have an accepted medical use but can also produce dependence. Examples are codeine and methamphetamine.
  • Schedule III: Though they have a low abuse potential, physical and psychological dependence is likely. This includes anabolic steroids and ketamine.
  • Schedule IV: These drugs have medical use and a low potential for abuse. Examples are Xanax and Valium.
  • Schedule V: These substances have a very low risk of abuse, medical use, and low dependence risks, and they are more often prescribed for these reasons.
  • Schedule VI: These drugs have a low chance of abuse. This classification includes marijuana.

Types of Drug Possession

Drug possession in North Carolina can be considered actual or constructive. It can be charged as simple possession or possession with intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver the substance. Simple possession is most often a misdemeanor, and possession with intent is a felony.

Actual possession is when the controlled substance is found directly on your person, such as in your clothes or in the vehicle you’re operating. You must also be aware it was there and had the ability and intention to use it.

Constructive possession refers to controlled substances found near a person or in a place they have access to. Often, this is charged when actual possession can’t be proved. The theory of constructive possession is shown by proving your intention and ability to control taking or using the drug. A controlled substance on your premises or controlled substance paraphernalia you own may be used as proof.

Penalties for Drug Possession

Drug possession penalties depend on several factors, and there are often exceptions. If a drug possession charge is classified as a class I felony, it will result in up to two years in prison. This includes:

  • If you have possession of a Schedule I drug
  • If you have over a certain amount of a Schedule II, III, or IV drug
  • If you have large amounts of Schedule VI drugs

A drug possession class I misdemeanor charge will result in a maximum of 120 days in jail. This includes possession of a Schedule II, III, or IV drug at lower amounts than would be needed to be charged with a felony.

A class 2 misdemeanor has a penalty of a maximum of 60 days in jail. This includes possession of Schedule V substances. Class 3 misdemeanors have a maximum penalty of 20 days in jail and include possession of Schedule VI drugs under a certain amount.

If the amount of substances exceeds a certain amount, you could also be charged with drug trafficking or possession with intent. These are often punished more severely.

FAQs About Dallas, NC Drug Possession Law

How Do You Beat a Drug Crime Charge in NC?

A skilled attorney can work to find a legal basis for dismissal, such as improper search and seizure, lack of probable cause or reasonable suspicion, inability to prove actual or constructive possession, or defective search warrant. Your lawyer can also work to find a reasonable plea deal with the state.

Do First-Time Drug Offenders Go to Jail in North Carolina?

This depends on the severity of the charge. A felony drug offense will likely result in incarceration and severe fines, even for a first-time offense. A first-offense misdemeanor may only bring fines and probation, rather than jail time, depending on the circumstances. However, even a first-offense misdemeanor could lead to jail time.

How Long Do You Go to Jail for Drug Possession in NC?

This depends on the class of drugs and the amount found in possession. Schedule I substances, such as LSD or heroin, result in up to 24 months in prison. Schedule II, III, or IV drugs, including cocaine, morphine, ketamine, or Valium, have a maximum sentence of 120 days in jail. If more than a certain amount of these substances is found, then the punishment is the same as a Schedule I substance. Lesser possession charges might be 20 to 60 days in jail.

What Is the Statute of Limitations on Drug Charges in NC?

Felony drug charges have no statute of limitations, but misdemeanor drug charges do. A drug possession misdemeanor has a statute of limitations of two years, like most North Carolina misdemeanors. Even a first-time offense for felony drug possession can be charged years later.

Experienced Legal Counsel

If you’ve been convicted of drug possession, don’t try to handle the case on your own. Contact the Law Firm of Brent D. Ratchford today and let our experienced drug possession attorneys help you get the best outcome possible.


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