When someone is charged with possession of a controlled substance, the severity of the penalty they face is to some extent dependent upon the schedule of the substance they had in their possession. The substance schedule is a categorization system that ranks drugs based upon their intended medical usage (if any), people’s susceptibility to dependency and addiction when using them, and the physical and psychological effects these substances can have on people. Schedule 1 is the highest rank in the hierarchy, and it includes the most potent and addictive substances.
Types Of Schedule 1 Controlled Substances
Unlike all of the other schedule rankings, schedule 1 substances have no medical usage. They are dangerous substances with no positive effects on one’s health and are never prescribed by a doctor. Schedule 1 substances include LSD, GHB, heroin, and ecstasy. They can cause profound physical and psychological changes to the human body and are highly addictive.
Schedule 1 Possession Penalties In Virginia
Possession of a schedule 1 substance is considered a felony. Those who have been charged with possession may face up to ten years in prison and a $2500 fine, even if this is the first offense.
Virginia First Time Offender Program
Because the penalties for schedule 1 substance possession are so severe, many first-time offenders will opt to participate in Virginia’s drug diversion program to defer or even dismiss their case in exchange for undergoing lifestyle changes. If an offender agrees to submit to regular drug and alcohol testing, a restricted or suspended driver’s license, and community service, he or she may see reduced penalties for the first offense. This may also require substance abuse treatment and education on drug abuse.
Criminal Defense For Possession
Even if you were found with a schedule 1 substance in your proximity, you have legal options. A skilled criminal defense lawyer has a wide variety of options for presenting a case on your behalf, including examinations into unlawful search and seizure or police misconduct. In addition, a lawyer may challenge the amount or identification of the substance in order to cast enough reasonable doubt in your case to be dismissed.
Reach Out To A Criminal Defense Attorney
A schedule 1 substance possession charge does not have to mean prison time and hefty fines. Get in touch with an experienced criminal defense attorney like Kermit A. Monge, who can examine the totality of the evidence and craft a case that gives you the best chance of seeing reduced penalties or a total dismissal of your case. In court, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty of the charge, and a skilled criminal defense attorney will assist you in providing sufficient doubt.
Reach out to discuss the specifics of your situation and determine a strategy for dealing with your possession charge so that you can move past this roadblock and continue on with your life. Contact the Law Offices of Kermit A. Monge, PLLC today by calling 703.273.5500 or request a consultation online.