In Maryland, basically marijuana has become decriminalized. Before, it was mostly marijuana, now it’s a little difficult to predict. It’s going to eventually be cocaine or heroin as the main drug cases and probably Oxycodone as well.
What Are the Main Differences Between Possession and Intent To Sell Charges?
The main difference is that possession is a misdemeanor and possession with intent to distribute is a felony unless there is an agreement with the prosecutor for conspiracy to distribute drugs which is a misdemeanor. The difference between conspiracy to distribute, which is a misdemeanor in Maryland and possession with intent is just the label; one is a misdemeanor and one is a felony. The sentencing guidelines are the same between conspiracy to distribute and distribute, so there’s very little practical difference in probation or jail time. It just gives the defendant the opportunity to say, “I’ve never been convicted of a felony”.
The difference between the felony distribution and mere possession is a huge difference in the sentencing guidelines. If somebody genuinely has a drug problem and you can prove that at sentencing, then judges generally are more lenient as long as the person is in a drug program and is clean and has clean urine tests and has demonstrated a commitment to be in long-term treatment. If somebody continues to be dirty before you get to the final court proceeding or if somebody is not safely going to a program or NA, then judges will treat a second time or a third time possession of drugs with some jail time. Generally, the first time of a conviction for cocaine or even heroine, even if the person is not demonstrating some sort of commitment for treatment, generally jail is not in the picture.
For Second and Third Time Drug Offenses It’s Extremely Important To Be in a Committed Drug Program
For the second time offenses and the third time offenses, it’s incredibly important to be in a committed drug program such as going to AA, NA regularly and to have clean urines in order to avoid a conviction. The first approach before anything, with our clients, is how to beat the case. We don’t like to start an interview with the new client talking about how to get a low sentence or to avoid jail, we’d like to start our interviews by examining how we’re going to win this case, how we’re going to walk out the front door without any probation, any fine, any conviction of any sort. That’s what we think we do very well.
We do not walk into the courtroom with a presumption of pleading guilty. We walk into the courtroom with a presumption that we’re going to find some miraculous loophole today to be able to walk out of this court even though the evidence appears overwhelming to us. A lot of times, when you just have that presumption, we’re going to find a way to win today even though we’re not sure what it can be that leads us to find it. A lot of our clients get not guilty verdicts or dismissals or they win on procedural technicalities.
For more information on Case Studies Of Drug Cases, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (240) 292-7200 today.