While California has liberalized drug laws, possession charges can still carry a stiff sentence. This will have consequences in the short-term and long run.
Now, possession of a controlled substance is no longer a felony in California. It is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in prison. This includes drugs like:
- Prescription drugs
In order to win a conviction, prosecutors will need to prove that you knew that you possessed an unlawful controlled substance. There is no such thing as a possession crime without intent.
Drug Diversion Programs Are a Possibility
While one year is the maximum sentence for a possession crime, not every single conviction is punished with prison. Public policy in California is moving toward the treatment of drug offenders as opposed to incarceration. You may be eligible for a drug diversion program. Preferably, this is one that could keep your criminal record clean. Otherwise, you may have difficulty passing a background check, and this could keep you from getting a job or even a place to live. Drug diversion programs could give you a clean record once you complete the terms of the program.
Hiring an attorney after a drug conviction could make a difference in the penalty. With an attorney, you have someone who can either fight the charges or negotiate a more lenient penalty with the prosecutor. An attorney will quickly get to the bottom of your case and give you a legal strategy to follow to either successfully contest the charges or minimize your punishment.
Learn How Sacramento and Marin County Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
The Mason Law Firm provides clients with experienced and aggressive legal representation when they are facing drug charges. Call a Marin County criminal defense attorney today at 833.717.1127 or contact us online to schedule your initial consultation to discuss your case.