Although the legal medical and recreational use of marijuana is sweeping the nation, don’t expect for law enforcement officers and prosecutors in Mississippi to go easy on you if you’re facing drug charges. There are so many different drug crimes that can land you in jail in the State of Mississippi. On top of a variety of different infractions, drug charges can also be impacted by the amount and type of drug involved. Whether it’s a small time marijuana possession or a large scale trafficking charge, your first step after a drug arrest needs to be speaking with a criminal defense attorney. Listed below are just a few of the different types of drug crimes and charges you can be slapped with.Different Types of Drug Crimes and Charges
Possession is one of the most common types of drug charges. Possession charges can happen to juveniles and adults, alike. Basically, this is when a law enforcement officer finds drugs in your possession. Possession means that a certain amount of illegal controlled substances has been found either on your person, in your car or on your personal property. Possession charges can also be accompanied by a wide variety of additional charges including paraphernalia, intent to distribute and trafficking.Intent to Distribute, Manufacturing and Trafficking
If you’re found with certain amounts of different types of drugs, you’re likely facing an intent to distribute charge. Depending upon your individual situation, you could also be facing trafficking charges. Once these charges start piling up, you could be facing a minimum of five, ten, twenty years or more behind bars. Manufacturing, or growing in the case of marijuana, will also carry severe penalties. These charges are typically reserved for larger scale operations, and may involve multiple state and federal drug enforcement agencies or task forces.Penalties for Different Types of Drugs
It’s important to note that not all drugs are created equal, in the eyes of the law. Certain drugs hold stiffer penalties than other drugs. In general, drugs typically associated with low income users hold much stiffer penalties than drugs that are typically associated with high end income earners. For years, the drug laws have cracked down on those who have little means to hire good criminal attorneys. If you were facing crack cocaine charges, you were going to face stiffer sentences if convicted than for the same amount of traditional cocaine. Meth has been another drug where lower socioeconomic classes have taken on the burden of stiffer sentences. It’s not fair, and it’s not just, so your best bet is hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after you’ve been charged.The Weight Makes a Difference
Not only can the type of drug involved in your charges have an impact on the type and severity of penalties you’re facing, but the weight or amount of drugs involve will also have a huge impact on your charges and potential penalties if convicted. For example, in Mississippi, the misdemeanor classification for marijuana charges is 30 grams or less. Anything over that, and you’re looking at felony charges, possibly with the intent to distribute tacked on. The government has already decided how much of what drug constitutes “personal use,” regardless of your real life situation. If you’ve got more than one dosage unit of crystal meth, you could be charged with a felony.When to Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney in Jackson
There are so many types of drug crimes and charges, and the possible combinations of potential charges are virtually endless. Thanks to mandatory minimums and the War on Drugs, even first-time offenders can face lengthy prison sentences for non-violent infractions. Since many of these drug cases can also involve multiple investigating and law enforcement agencies, it’s a good idea to have a lawyer who has successful drug case experience, at the local, state and federal level.
If you or somebody you love are facing any kind of drug charges in the Jackson Metro Area or the surrounding communities, contact the skilled legal team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (601) 948-1600 for an immediate case consultation.