Possession of Cocaine
Although cocaine use has dropped nationwide, in Philadelphia it is one of top reasons why people have to enter drug treatment programs. If you have been charged with possessing cocaine, you are facing a crime with consequences that can include a prison term and expensive fines. Even if you are caught with a small amount of cocaine, you may be looking at a harsh punishment.
What You Need To Know About Possession of Cocaine
When you or a family member is arrested on charges of cocaine possession, you may be up against the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s tough mandatory minimum sentencing laws.
- Even if you only have a small amount of cocaine that you intend just for personal use and it’s your first offense, you might be looking at up to a year in prison and $5,000 in fines. If it’s your second offense, you could serve up to two years in prison. Three years, if it’s your third offense.
The drug does not have to be found in your pocket, handbag or backpack. You can be convicted of possession if it is simply near you, or found in your home or car.
What To Do If You Have Been Charged
If you are charged with having cocaine in your possession, it is important that you do not make any statements to the arresting officer about the drugs. Do not tell the officer who you believe the cocaine belongs to.
As with most criminal charges, you should not talk to the police or prosecutors without your attorney by your side. What you say can be taken out of context and used against you. If the police question you, tell them you want a lawyer and politely refuse to answer their questions.
What Your Pennsylvania Cocaine Attorney Can Do
Your lawyer will examine the alleged facts to first determine if there was probable cause to charge you lawfully.
- For example if you were stopped in your car, your defense attorney is going to see if there was probable cause to pull you over and to search you and the vehicle.
- They will probe further to find out exactly where the cocaine was found – and what impact that might have on your case. For example, if the cocaine was found in your car but there were three other people riding with you – the drugs might not have been yours.
Often people found with drugs are struggling with addiction problems. In the Philadelphia area, your defense attorney may be able to work out a deal for you to enter a drug treatment program instead of jail.
How a Drug Defense Attorney Will Help
When you are up against a cocaine possession charge, you will be facing inflexible laws and a determined prosecutor. You will need an attorney who can help you determine all of your options and achieve the best outcome for your circumstances.
Pennsylvania Possession of Cocaine Law
Possession of cocaine is described and defined under The Pennsylvania Code under Title 35 Chapter 6. Read the code here.
Questions? Contact us today.
If at all possible, Fienman Defense will try to get the charges against you dismissed or see if a drug treatment program would be right for your situation. Based on the evidence and the constraints of mandatory sentencing, we will work hard to get your penalties lowered. And if your case goes to court, Fienman Defense will fight to win an acquittal.