State law has taken great strides in recognizing that illegal drugs are as much of a public health problem as they are criminal matters. To this end, many people facing charges related to the possession of these substances can seek out mental health services and rehabilitation.
At the same time, prosecutors still may bring distribution charges that can result in serious penalties, including time in prison. Whether you are facing a first arrest for drug possession or are accused of distributing illegal substances, you need help from a dedicated attorney. Speak with a New Britain drug lawyer at our firm today to protect your rights and future.
Drug Possession Charges in New Britain
Connecticut General Statute § 21a-279 is the state’s law concerning the illegal possession of controlled substances. On the surface, it appears to prohibit the possession of drugs on any level and punishes this offense as a class A misdemeanor. However, recent changes in the law may allow people to avoid this outcome.
The possession of less than one-half ounce of marijuana is no longer illegal anywhere in the state. Police can no longer arrest a person who has less than this amount on their person or locked in their cars.
Alternative Options for Drug Charges
While the changes to the marijuana laws are important, other modifications to the law aim to help protect those who have grown dependent on illegal substances. Subsection (d) of this statute allows a person to present evidence to the court that an arrest only occurred as the product of seeking medical help, either for themselves or others. Additionally, the law allows for a suspension of a criminal case if there is reason to believe that a defendant is a drug-dependent person.
The successful completion of this program could result in the dropping of the charges. A drug attorney in the area could help a person determine if these options are available.
Penalties for Drug Distribution Charges
State law enforcement is much more concerned with punishing the alleged distributors of illegal drugs. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 21a-277 prohibits the distribution, sale, or manufacture of illegal drugs. As applied to narcotic drugs, such as heroin or cocaine, the law says that a conviction can result in a prison sentence of up to 15 years. Subsequent convictions increase the maximum sentence to 30 years. If the substance in question is not a narcotic but still illegal under state law, convictions for a first offense come with a prison sentence of up to seven years.
Unlike in the state’s laws concerning possession of illegal drugs, there is no potential diversion program for those facing distribution charges. Arrests under this law leave individuals with no choice but to fight back in court. A New Britain drug lawyer is prepared to take every necessary step to dispute these charges and protect the freedoms of those who are facing these serious allegations.
Reach Out to a New Britain Drug Attorney for Your Defense
Drug cases are among the most common that appear in local criminal courts. However, if you can show that the discovery of drugs was the product of seeking medical care for yourself or another, the court may drop the charges. Additionally, people with a drug dependency may seek out court-supervised counseling in place of criminal charges.
However, those accused of making, selling, or otherwise distributing drugs may face severe penalties and potential prison sentences. Regardless of whether you face possession or distribution charges, it is crucial to seek advice from a hardworking attorney. A New Britain drug lawyer is ready to hear your story, evaluate your options, and defend your rights in court. Contact Ruane Attorneys today to learn more.