Like all states, Michigan has laws regulating the possession of potentially addictive or dangerous drugs, also known as “Controlled Dangerous Substances” or “CDS”. If you’ve been charged with possession of even a small amount of a CDS, don’t take it lightly. Possessing even a small amount of certain drugs can lead to significant penalties.
First, it’s important to understand that you can be convicted of “possessing” a CDS even if it’s not on your person. If it appears you were in a position to control access to the drugs (for example, they’re found hidden in your home), that’s enough.
Understanding Michigan Law
Michigan’s drug laws do recognize that some CDS are more dangerous than others. Some, such as prescription painkillers, are often abused, but do have legitimate medical uses. Others have no generally accepted medical use. Michigan’s laws thus classify CDS into a five tier CDS “Schedule”. Schedule 1 drugs are those considered highly dangerous and of little or no medical value (for example, LSD). CDS on Schedules 2 through 5 drugs are those with progressively less potential for abuse and legitimate medical uses. The penalties for illegally possessing a Schedule 4 or 5 substance will generally be less severe.
However, the type of drug you’re charged with possessing is only one consideration. The law deals much more severely with those who make and sell CDS than with those who use them. This is known as “possession with intent to distribute”. The intent is implied when the quantity you had in your possession at the time of your arrest was larger than it’s reasonable to think one person would have for personal use. Thus, an arrest for possessing a few grams of marijuana will often be treated as a less minor crime called a “misdemeanor”, for which the penalty is typically a fine and term of probation. By contrast, possessing an amount large enough to allow you to deal to others may be considered a far more serious “felony”, punishable by jail terms of up to fifteen years and fines of up to $10 million.
Hire an Experienced Macomb County Attorney
If you are facing a drug possession or possession with intent to distribute charge in Macomb County, you need someone on your side. While the experienced and aggressive attorneys at Lucido & Manzella P.C. will help you understand the consequences if you’re convicted, we’ll also explore every legitimate potential defense. For example, perhaps you are charged with possession of Schedule 4 painkillers, but you have a valid doctor’s prescription. You may be able to challenge the way in which the search of your person or home was conducted, or you may be able to show that you were unaware the CDS were in your home.
In other cases, a negotiated guilty plea may be your best option. If you do decide to go this route, however, your attorney may be able to negotiate a reduced or suspended sentence. Depending upon various factors, including any prior criminal record and the type and quantity of CDS involved, you may even be eligible for an alternative sentence such as mandatory completion of a drug treatment program.
If you’ve been charged with possession of any CDS in Macomb County, don’t delay – let the lawyers at Lucido & Manzella P.C. review and evaluate your case today. Call us now at 586-842-0198.