Drug charges can result in serious penalties ranging from expensive fines to court costs and time in prison. If you are facing drug charges in Ohio, you need an experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer to build a strong defense for your case. You need a lawyer who will fight aggressively to achieve the best possible outcome and protect your rights.
In addition to the federal controlled substances schedule, Ohio also has its own schedule. Drugs are divided into five categories:
Some of the most common drug charges in Ohio include:
In the state of Ohio, it is illegal to knowingly possess or obtain a controlled substance unless you:
ORC Chapter 2925.14 defines drug paraphernalia as any equipment, material, or product used or intended to use for cultivating, manufacturing, processing, preparing, producing, ingesting, packaging, containing, storing, or concealing. Under this law, it is illegal to use, sell or advertise for sale drug paraphernalia.
Ohio law prohibits the sale, transport, delivery, and distribution of controlled substances. Various factors will determine the charges, including the quantity of drugs in possession. Drug trafficking is a serious crime, and it requires the help of an experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer.
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Although marijuana is considered a Schedule I substance, it is treated differently from other drugs in in this category.
Penalties for marijuana crimes include:
Like marijuana, heroin is charged differently than other Schedule I drugs. The amount of heroin will determine the charges:
Possession of a scheduled substance can result in harsh penalties.
Penalties are more significant if you possess large amounts of a drug or if you have a previous drug conviction.
Trafficking is a serious crime with serious consequences. The penalties will depend on the controlled substance being trafficked, the amount being trafficked, and other factors.
A drug trafficking conviction can also result in the loss of your driver’s license and even the loss of your professional license.
Possession of drug paraphernalia is a fourth-degree misdemeanor. The sale, advertisement of sale, or intent to sell drug paraphernalia is a second-degree misdemeanor. If you are selling or intend to sell to minors, the charges are higher and may result in a first-degree misdemeanor.
If you’re facing drug charges in Ohio, you need the help of an experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer. Convictions can result in serious penalties that can follow you for the rest of your life.
Facing drug charges? If you are unsure of what to do next and need help navigating the complicated Ohio drug offense laws, contact The Botnick Law Firm today for a free case evaluation. Your future is at stake. Call us now to get the help you deserve. An experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer can help get you through this. Contact us today for a FREE consultation.
The process to charge someone that’s been accused of a crime begins with an arrest. If the police have reason to believe that someone has committed a crime, the accused can be taken into custody. Police will usually start by asking basic questions like name and address to identify a person, and then they’ll often pivot to more specific questions related to the incident. At some point during this, you should have been read your “Miranda warnings.”
You have the right to remain silent to avoid disclosing evidence that could potentially be self-incriminating, as well as the right to an attorney to defend you in court. Those are your unwavering rights that must be recited upon taking someone into custody. Take note of when these rights are read to you, as it could be helpful information for your attorney.
When you’ve been taken down to the station, police will fingerprint you and get your photograph to update their records. Once this is done, you should be granted the opportunity to contact your criminal defense lawyer. If you don’t have a lawyer, get a loved one to book a consultation with a lawyer on your behalf. It’s important that you do NOT disclose any details about your case over the phone with your loved ones, as those calls are monitored.
After you’ve made it through the booking process, the police may begin conducting their investigation with you. Depending on the situation, this might include a personal search, collecting samples, interviewing/interrogating, police lineups, etc.
You’ll be held at the station until you can be brought before a judge. The initial court appearance will happen within 48 hours or less of the arrest. Here, the judge will review the case and decide if there’s any reason to keep you in holding or if bail can be granted. If bail is granted, you’re allowed to be released upon certain conditions.
Depending on the seriousness of your allegations, you may have a preliminary hearing at which a judge can determine whether enough evidence exists to charge you with that level of crime. You’ll be able to plead “guilty” or “not guilty.” If you plead not guilty, your case will be sent to trial. You may get the opportunity to enter a plea deal. That’s something your attorney will advise you on.
In the discovery stage, the case against you is made much more transparent. The prosecutor will share the evidence they have against you with your defense attorney. During this time, your attorney can make additional requests for evidence if need be. All of the evidence on the table will be considered, and your lawyer will work with you to form the best plan for your defense.
If a plea deal is unable to be reached, the case will enter trial. During the trial, the prosecutor begins by presenting the case to the jury. They share any evidence they have against you and have witnesses make their statements for the prosecution. This can be tough to sit through. Afterward, it’s your lawyer’s turn to take the stands and share your side of the story. Your lawyer can question the prosecutor’s witnesses and all of the evidence that was used against you. There are many different strategies that your lawyer will use to defend you during the trial.
In a best-case scenario, you will have been found not guilty by the end of the trial, and the charges against you have been dropped. If you are found guilty, the judge must determine what your sentence/penalties will be. The sentencing will happen at another hearing, usually a few weeks after your trial ends.
Fighting to get a drug possession (or any other drug charge) dropped is a process that should not be approached on your own. If you are convicted of drug charges they could leave a permanent stain on your record. An experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer can look at the particulars of your situation and determine the best ways to fight the charges. Oftentimes they will work to prove that there was some piece of your arrest that was handled incorrectly – such as lack of reasonable suspicion or improper search of your possessions.
The most serious drug offenses in Ohio will be charged as felonies instead of misdemeanors – generally, felony drug charges involve possession of large amounts of one or multiple substances clearly with the intent to sell or distribute. In some situations, it is possible for an experienced drug charges lawyer to fight for a reduced charge if they are able to prove that the situation was not as serious as originally charged.
Defending drug charges is a serious undertaking and it is not advisable to go about it on your own. Working with an experienced Cleveland drug charges lawyer will give you the best possible defense against your charges. They will be able to comb through the details of your arrest and the ensuing charges in order to come up with the best plan for trying to get your charges reduced or possibly even dropped altogether.
We have successfully represented clients across Northern Ohio. If you are facing criminal charges, we can help you too. Don’t delay. The district attorney is building their case against you right now.
The Prosecutor will not take your charges lightly — Will you?