Being accused of drug possession can be a very damaging accusation which can affect your personal and professional life for years to come, even if you are not ultimately convicted of that crime.
However, there are some circumstances which can help your case, as well as those which can cause you even more problems with the law.
Experts at Monder Law Group give us the rundown of some of these and what you can do in order to increase your chances of a positive outcome.
Violence-Related Aggravating Circumstances
If the crime you are accused of includes some serious violence, including causing great bodily harm to another person, particularly if that person was a police officer or some other official.
Having a firearm when you are arrested is also not going to help your case, especially if you don’t have a license to carry it.
Causing a lot of material damage in the course of committing a crime can have a really negative effect on your chances of getting a good outcome. It can be classified as a separate crime, but more often than not, it will be added to your drug charge.
Other Aggravating Circumstances
One of the more serious aggravating circumstances is including other people in your crime, and it can get even worse if the person or persons who you’ve involved are minors.
In some cases, even the quantity of the controlled substance can be a cause for aggravating circumstance. What’s more, it can change the classification of your crime form simple possession to possession of drugs with the intent to sell, which carries a much heavier punishment.To find out more about that here https://www.monderlaw.com/pratice-areas/drugs/possession-for-sale.
California-Specific Aggravating Circumstances
Having a previous criminal record, both juvenile and adult can impact your criminal proceedings quite negatively and is considered an aggravating circumstance in California.
It is particularly problematic if the previous conviction is a strike offense according to the California Three Strike Law and even more so if it was also drug-related because it shows that you have not been dissuaded from that behavior by previous sentences.
On the other hand, there are some situations which may sway the case in your favor and incur some leniency for you.
If you’re not the organizer of the crime, but rather a passive or minor participant, this should play right into your hand, you may be able to have a reduced sentence if found guilty. Chances are that you won’t avoid any kind of punishment, but at least you will be given a reduced sentence or a probation instead of serious jail/prison time.
Similarly, if you participated in the crime because you were coerced or otherwise forced to, and you can prove it, you may be able to get away with a reduced sentence as well.
Finally, not having any kind of previous criminal record, especially related to drugs, is almost guaranteed to provide you with some mitigating circumstances. What’s more, in the case if you do have a prior criminal record, if your behavior during probation period was commendable you may be granted some leniency.
Seeing how going to prison may seriously damage your personal and professional life, you should take any and every chance you can to avoid prison, or at least reduce the time spent there.
Make sure you consider both the aggravating and the mitigating circumstances of a crime before you go into court and share them with your attorney so that you can create the best possible case for yourself.