Bloomington Marijuana Possession Attorney
Have you been arrested and charged with the possession of marijuana? If so, please call a Bloomington marijuana possession attorney from Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols.
Marijuana And Paraphernalia Defense Attorney
Despite decriminalization efforts in other states, possession of any quantity of marijuana in Illinois is a criminal offense. Pursuant to 720 ILCS 550/4, any person who knowingly possesses marijuana in any measurable amount is subject to criminal liability. The effects of a marijuana charge on your record can follow you for the rest of your life and impact your career.
Federal Vs. State Drug Charges
Both federal and state laws regulate controlled substances, including the manufacturing, possession, distribution, and sale or marijuana. All U.S. citizens must adhere to federal laws regardless of the state they are a resident of. If they fail to do so, they could be charged with under federal law and may be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney in federal court. If you are found to be in possession of marijuana, you could also be charged by the state of Illinois – regardless of the residency of your state or nationality. Cases in the state will be prosecuted by the State Attorney’s office for the county in which the act was committed in.
At this time, Illinois has not passed any legislation regarding the legal use of marijuana. Possession anything less than 2.5 grams of marijuana will likely be charged as a Class C misdemeanor. As a Bloomington marijuana possession attorney might explain, this charge could carry penalties including:
- Fines and fees
- Jail time
- A Criminal record
In general, the more you have on you, the more severe penalties will become. The maximum penalty for possession of marijuana in Illinois is a Class 1 Felony which can carry a 20 year prison sentence and up to $25,000 in fines. Should there be any aggravating circumstances, such as driving while under the influence, assault, or possession with intent to distribute, growing, manufacturing, and so forth, the penalties can also be significantly greater. If you’ve been charged with a marijuana possession, talk with a Bloomington marijuana possession attorney about your rights and legal options.
Federal Grants and Student Aid
Apart from the penalties listed above, a collateral consequence of marijuana possession is that it can affect federal grants and student aid. If you are going to college and on federal aid, such as Pell Grants or Stafford Loans, the grant division has the right to pull that grant for at least one year if you are convicted. This could be devastating to your education and future.
Marijuana Possession Defenses
While the possession of marijuana or paraphernalia is a criminal offense in Illinois, every individual has rights that cannot be infringed upon in a marijuana possession arrest. The state has the burden of proof in showing that you knowingly possessed the marijuana. The police must also conduct their search within the bounds of the 4th Amendment of the US Constitution. A warrant is not always necessary, but the exception to the warrant requirement, what is called “exigent circumstances,” can be challenged if exigent circumstances did not exist. If an individual does not give consent to a search and exigent circumstances do not exist, the evidence can be suppressed.
Marijuana Defense Lawyer
A charge for possession of marijuana or paraphernalia can lead to jail time and a hefty fine. The long-term effects of such a charge could be even worse. With the help of a knowledgeable, confident attorney you can ensure that your rights are protected and achieve the best possible result in court. In some instances, the charges can be dismissed for drug treatment or educational programs. If the evidence is suppressed, your case will be thrown out and you will face no charge at all. At Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols, your initial consultation is free. We can personally discuss your situation and decide the best way to achieve the result you deserve.
Call a Bloomington Marijuana Possession Attorney for Help and Advice
Bloomington marijuana possession attorneys, Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols, has been fighting for men, women, and adolescents who have been charged with drug crimes of all sorts. We believe in our clients freedom and will do our best to protect your rights and interests. Sadly, the war on drugs began largely with the use of marijuana. Furthermore, it is not uncommon for marijuana users to receive harsh punishments – even though in some states its medicinal or recreational. Regardless of the ongoing debates about the benefits of marjuana, it is illegal under federal law and some state laws, including Illinois. If you are found guilty of possession, you may have a permanent criminal record and have to deal with a broad range of other consequences. If this is not something you are ready for, call a Bloomington marijuana possession attorney now.
Bloomington Marijuana Possession Attorney FAQs
Marijuana possession cases with a Bloomington, IL marijuana possession attorney are becoming more and more common, and they can often be confusing due to rapidly evolving laws and policies. While several regions have decriminalized or legalized marijuana, many still prosecute possession cases stringently. Here are five frequently asked questions about marijuana possession cases. Learn more and then contact Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols for help.
What constitutes marijuana possession?
Possession refers to having control over an item, in this case, marijuana. This control can be either direct, meaning the marijuana is on your person (like in your pocket), or constructive, meaning the marijuana is in a place you control (such as your car or home, even if you were not the one who put it there). Moreover, possession can be either actual, where you are aware of the marijuana’s presence, or constructive, where you may not be physically in possession but have access and control over the location where the marijuana is found.
What are the penalties for marijuana possession?
Penalties for marijuana possession vary dramatically depending on the jurisdiction, the amount of marijuana involved, whether the possession is considered to be for personal use or for sale, and the individual’s previous criminal record. Penalties can range from minor fines, compulsory drug education or treatment, probation to more severe consequences such as incarceration. In regions where marijuana is decriminalized, penalties tend to be less severe or non-existent for personal use.
Is marijuana possession always illegal?
Whether marijuana possession is illegal depends on the specific laws of your jurisdiction. Many U.S. states have legalized medical and/or recreational use of marijuana, while federal law still classifies marijuana as a Schedule I controlled substance. Internationally, laws vary widely, with some countries allowing recreational use, others only allowing medicinal use, and some banning the substance outright. Always check local and national laws to understand the legalities surrounding marijuana possession.
How can I defend myself in a marijuana possession case?
The defenses available in a marijuana possession case vary based on the specifics of the case and jurisdiction. Some common defenses include challenging the legality of the search that resulted in the discovery of marijuana, questioning the accuracy of field tests used to identify the substance, and asserting that the marijuana belonged to someone else. In some cases, a medical necessity defense might be possible if medical marijuana is legal in the jurisdiction. Consulting with an experienced Bloomington marijuana possession attorney is crucial in determining the best possible defense.
Can a marijuana possession conviction be expunged?
In many jurisdictions, it is possible to have a marijuana possession conviction expunged, especially if it’s a first offense or a minor possession charge. Expungement is a legal process where the conviction is effectively ‘erased’ from your public criminal record. The rules and procedures for expungement vary widely, so it’s recommended to consult with a legal professional.
Marijuana laws are complex and vary significantly between different jurisdictions. It’s important to be informed about the laws specific to your location and circumstances. If you’re facing a marijuana possession case, seeking professional legal advice is vital. The information provided here serves as a general guide and may not apply directly to your situation. Always seek legal advice tailored to your individual circumstances. Contact a Bloomington marijuana possession attorney at Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols to go over the details of your case.