Drug Possession Defense Lawyer in Phoenix
I was arrested for Possession of Drugs, what should I do?
If you have been charged with possession of drugs in Phoenix, AZ, the consequences are serious, even if it's your first-time offense. Ranging from a Class 1 felony, which is the most severe to a Class 6, which is the least critical, you are facing felony charges.
You've heard the mantra, anything you say can and will be used against you. Law enforcement means it, so don't offer any information. No matter what your arrest is based on, be it a confidential informant, sting operation, or wiretap, at the moment of your arrest, you must not agree to talk to the authorities.
According to the U.S. Constitution, we all have a Fifth Amendment Right to remain silent. The Fifth Amendment prevents you from incriminating yourself. Politely invoke your right to remain silent and ask for an attorney.
Protecting your Rights
When charged with a criminal offense, I know just how helpless it can feel. Uncertain of where to turn to, who to trust, and overall at an utter loss, you need a trusted source to guide you through the criminal court system who genuinely is out to protect your freedom. You need Aaron Black.
Although the possible outcome of your case may seem bleak, bear in mind that each situation has its own set of circumstances, and with that comes defense opportunities tailored to fit your particular case.
Arizona Drug Possession Statutes & What they mean
There are several statutes in regards to drug possession in regards to knowingly possessing, the threshold amount for various illicit drugs and the weight of the unlawful substance.
- Authorities are enforcing Arizona Revised Statute §13-3407(A)(2) that covers knowingly possessing a drug for sale. ARS §13-3407(A)(7) addresses knowingly possessing illicit drugs to transport or offer to transport drugs for sale, importing drugs into Arizona, or offering to sell or transfer a dangerous drug.
- ARS §13-3407(D) establishes a threshold amount for various illicit drugs by the amount and weight of them. If the amount of narcotics reaches the threshold, the law presumes you had that much because you possessed them intending to sell or transport them.
- ARS §13-3401(36) defines "weight" as including the entire weight of "any mixture of substance that contains a detectable amount of an unlawful substance." If the contents have more than one substance, the entire weight of all materials are taken together and "the unlawful substance that results in the greatest offense."
Weight examples of common illicit drugs:
- Marijuana, 2 pounds
- Methamphetamine, 9 grams
- PCP, 4 grams or 50 milliliters
- Cocaine, 9 grams
- Crack (Cocaine base of hydrolyzed cocaine), 750 milligrams
- Heroin, 1 gram
- LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide), 1/2 milliliter
Class 2 felony, which is the most severe to a Class 6, which is the least critical.
The classification is dependent on the amount of drugs you possessed at the time of your arrest, as well as other factors.
Drug Possession Penalties
Arizona sentencing for drug possession is divided into separate categories, personal possession and use, multiple drug offenses, and non-multiple drug offenses as well as the drug you possessed.
Depending on the type, amount of drugs you possessed at the time of your arrest, and previous run-ins with the law, penalties will vary.
- Class 6 felony
Class 6 felony carries a maximum punishment of 2 years in prison, 3 years of supervised probation, and a $150,000 fine and surcharges.
Class 6 felonies can include charges such as possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting arrest, aggravated DUI, theft, and possession of marijuana.
- Class 5 felony
A class 5 felony offense carries a maximum punishment of 2.5 years in prison, 3 years of supervised probation, and a $150,000 fine and surcharges.
Some examples of class 5 felony offenses include theft of a credit card, unlawful flight from law enforcement, criminal damage, theft, and aggravated assault on a police officer.
- Class 4 felony
A class 4 felony is punishable by a maximum punishment is 3.75 years in prison, 4 years of probation, and a fine of $150,000 plus surcharges.
Class 4 felony offenses include aggravated DUI, possession of narcotic drugs, possession of dangerous drugs, misconduct involving weapons, forgery, identity theft, and burglary.
- Class 3 felony
A class 3 felony offense is punishable by up to 8.75 years in prison, 5 years of probation, and a $150,000 and surcharges.
Examples of class 3 felony offenses include theft of a motor vehicle, aggravated assault, possession of marijuana for sale, theft, burglary, aggravated robbery, and trafficking stolen property.
- Class 2 felony
A class 2 felony offense is punishable by up to 12.5 years in prison, 7 years of probation, and a fine of $150,000 plus surcharges.
Class 2 felony offenses include possession of narcotic drugs for sale, possession of dangerous drugs for sale, manslaughter, aggravated assault, sexual assault, child prostitution, armed robbery, assisting a criminal street gang, burglary, discharging a firearm, theft and fraudulent schemes.
- Class 1 felony
A class 1 felony offense is the most serious crime a person can be charged with and is reserved for murder charges only.
A class 1 felony carries a minimum of 25 years to life and has a maximum penalty of the death penalty.
In many situations, the prosecution may offer a plea agreement. The defense can also propose a deal if the client agrees to reduce the seriousness of the charge and length of sentence. Plea agreements are beneficial to the state by saving taxpayers the expense of a trial.
Common Drug Possession Defenses
The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you had drugs in your possession to obtain a conviction.
Reasonable doubt is a doubt based upon reason and common sense, rather than being based purely on speculation.
- You knowingly possessed, sold, imported, transported dangerous drugs
- The drug was a narcotic
Because of the various investigative technics, drug possession cases will have different facts, physical evidence, supporting facts, and testimony that may conflict.
- An illegal search was performed
- You didn't know that a drug possession crime was planned or carried out even if you were in close physical contact of it or driving a vehicle unaware of its illicit cargo.
- Without such knowledge, you had no intention of committing a crime. In this situation, it may be best to cooperate with authorities but do so with a defense lawyer at your side. Yet, under pressure, they may have caused you to make a false confession, which would not become evidence.
- Entrapment, although a problematic defense, is solid if authorities went beyond their legal limits and coerced you to take part in possessing drugs for sale or transportation. You wouldn't have committed the crime but for investigator interference.
- Authorities failed to advise you of your Miranda rights, which stem from a long-ago Arizona case. If you read your rights, the evidence gathered won't be admissible in court.
- The investigation itself may have faults. Careless paperwork, the validity of a search warrant, missing evidence, challenging the weight of the drugs didn't meet the threshold amount, or witnesses may be lying to implicate you.
Experienced Criminal Defense
A former Public Defender, I defend clients charged in Phoenix, AZ, and surrounding with possession of drugs and a multitude of other crimes, including drugged DUI and DUI defense
I represent each of my clients. Unlike many large firms that work to acquire as many cases as possible at any given time, I represent a limited number of clients. You can expect individualized service from the Law Office of Aaron Black.
Not only will you get personal representation, but you will also get direct contact with me.
When you have questions, are nervous, need to talk, or you need to chat to ease your mind, you will have my cell number, and I'm available to you 24 hours a day.
Although not the cheapest defense attorney in Phoenix, AZ, when your freedom is at stake, you need the truth about the potential outcome and someone with knowledge of the legal system and the experience to back it up. With your life's balance on the line, cost should not be your first criteria when choosing a criminal defense attorney.
From sexual assault to white-collar crimes, you will never get fed a line of bull from me, just straightforward truth depending on the circumstances of your case, possible defenses, and potential outcomes. Criminal cases such as…
In each case that I defend, no matter what charges my Client is facing, the goal is always to get the state to dismiss their case long before the trial or to negotiate a plea agreement that benefits the person who made a mistake.
Free Legal Advice 24-Hours a Day
Obtaining competent legal representation is vital in your defense, and you have the right to consult with a defense attorney before making a hiring decision. I, like many other Criminal Defense Attorneys
, offer a free and confidential legal consultation.
I'll listen to your side of the situation, and apply the applicable law to assess the strength of your defense and your options.
I provide personalized legal services, and I can assure you that you won't be handed off to a paralegal. You'll have my undivided attention in building your defense and aggressively defending you at all steps in the legal process.
Representing clients in all Arizona federal, state, county and city courts, I serve clients in the following cities.
- Apache Junction
- Tempe, Arizona
Contact the Phoenix DUI & Criminal Defense Attorney Aaron Black
or call (480) 729-1683 any time day or night, including weekends and holidays, and I'll promptly respond unless I'm in court.
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