Drug Possession in Arizona
Being charged with drug possession is a difficult and scary situation to be in. If you are charged with drug possession in the state of Arizona, you will face criminal prosecution. However, you do not need to go through the criminal process alone, and there are resources out there that can help reduce or even absolve you of the heavy-handed charges. With the right criminal defense lawyer, you can get the help you need during the litigation process.
Drug Possession Laws in Arizona
Drug possession in Arizona is classified as a class 4 felony, according to ARS §13-3407. In the state of Arizona, felony offenses can range from class 2 to class 6. At the class 4 level, the maximum punishment is 3.75 years in prison, four years of probation, and a fine of $150,000. The sentencing level will depend upon whether it is a first offense and the type of drug you were in possession of. According to ARS §13-3407, you can be charged with drug possession if the drug is a “dangerous drug.” While it is unclear what “dangerous drug” means, it typically refers to any drug that is not marijuana or a narcotic. If you have been accused of drug possession, an attorney can help provide you with the defense that will support your interests during the prosecution process.
Prosecution Process for Drug Possession
Under ARS §13-3401, in order to be convicted of drug possession during the prosecution process, it must be proven “beyond a reasonable doubt” that you were in possession of drugs. You also must have been aware that you were in possession of the drugs. The responsibility of your attorney is to refute arguments by prosecutors, provide case law history, and apply the rules of evidence to your case in order to get the charges mitigated or dropped.
Burden of Proof
When you are accused of drug possession in Arizona, the prosecution has the burden of proving you were knowingly in possession of drugs. In order to satisfy the burden of proof, the prosecution needs to provide enough evidence that would show “beyond a reasonable doubt” that you were knowingly in possession of a drug and that the substance you were in possession of was in fact a drug. As you go through the prosecution process, it is imperative that you consult your attorney and that you do not speak to law enforcement on your own. Anything you say or do can impact your case.
Being accused of drug possession is a serious issue, but it is not one that you need to handle alone. With a reputable criminal defense attorney, you can get the help you need during this difficult time. If you are looking for a criminal defense attorney in the Flagstaff and northern Arizona areas, then contact the Law Offices of Gonzales & Poirier today. Our criminal defense team can provide you with the quality legal representation you deserve in your time of need.