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In Ohio, drug crimes represent a large share of the total criminal charges filed each year. Many residents will face some type of drug charge, even if it is for something minor. Regardless of the severity of the situation or charge, it is critical to understand your legal rights and to protect yourself during the entire process. Drug crimes can include many different acts like possessing, manufacturing or cultivating, or even possessing drug paraphernalia. Cleveland drug crime attorney A. Dale Naticchia understands just how stressful and daunting this situation is for you and your family, even if you haven’t been accused and are simply part of an informal investigation. Our team will work with you to help you understand your rights and strive to prepare the strongest defense available. We have assisted people throughout Ohio including Akron and Cuyahoga County in cases related to drug charges, theft, DUI, and more. Contact us today to start protecting your rights.Ohio Drug Crimes
Lawmakers in Ohio have passed statutes that provide harsh penalties for drug activities including trafficking, distribution, cultivation, and manufacturing. Marijuana is one of the most common narcotics involved in criminal charges for drug crimes. Unlike other states, Ohio has not legalized marijuana, but it has decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana in some cases. A small amount is defined as less than 100 grams, and carries a misdemeanor charge and $150 fine. You can also find your driver’s license suspended and it may impact your ability to receive student loans. So while a minor marijuana possession charge may seem unthreatening, it is still important to bring the strongest defense possible, and an experienced drug crimes lawyer in Cleveland can help.
More serious charges are associated with possession of large amounts of marijuana including plants. The defendant in these cases may be sentenced to several years in state prison. There is a greater risk of your incarceration being increased where the prosecution can point to evidence suggesting that you were selling, distributing, or trafficking marijuana.
Drug crimes involving other substances like cocaine, meth, heroin, PCP, ecstasy, and prescription pills have even harsher sentences and penalties. In most instances, drug crimes involving these substances are charged as felonies, which can impact you for the rest of your life. Conviction for a fifth degree felony carries a prison sentence of up to 12 months, while a first degree felony carries a sentence of up to 11 years and a fine as high as $20,000. If you are facing felony drug charges, it is wise to speak with a Cleveland drug crimes attorney as soon as possible.Assert a Defense to a Drug Crime Charge
Just because you are charged with a drug crime does not mean that you have no hope of avoiding it or having it reduced. There are several defenses that may apply to your situation. The first thing that a seasoned criminal defense lawyer will examine is whether the authorities abided by appropriate procedural rules when interacting with you and acquiring evidence. There are constitutional protections that require the police to have a reasonable suspicion that criminal activity is occurring before they can detain someone. If the police fail to abide by these search and seizure rules, then any evidence obtained as a result of the interaction must be suppressed. There are also rules that require the authorities to provide you with your Miranda rights at the time of arrest. Miranda rights describe your right to an attorney, your right to silence, and other rights while in police custody and during questioning. If the police fail to provide these rights or fail to provide you with an attorney or a chance to speak to your attorney upon request, then any statements or evidence acquired due to these failures may be suppressed. There are other possible defenses that you should explore, including lack of intent or being unaware that drugs were in your possession at the time of arrest.Drug Crimes Attorneys Serving Cleveland Residents
In addition to being uncertain about your future and the outcome of the charge, selecting the right attorney to represent you in a drug case can be incredibly stressful. At the Law Office of A. Dale Naticchia, we offer a free consultation to discuss your situation and how we can assist you. We have handled a wide variety of drug crimes cases involving various charges and substances. As a result, we are well-versed in the procedural and substantive rules that apply to these criminal proceedings, as well as those related to DUI, burglary, and other crimes, and will work diligently to pursue the outcome that you deserve. Our team serves clients throughout Parma, Bedford, Rocky River, Berea, Garfield Heights, Stow, and Barberton. To schedule your consultation call us at 216-520-5297 or contact us online.