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New Haven Drug Offense Penalties

If a person is convicted of a crime, typically what people refer to as a criminal record shows the crime and the specific subsection under which the person is convicted. Having a criminal conviction does have long-term impacts, particularly if it is a felony and a criminal conviction. Typically on someone’s record, what shows up is the person’s name, date of birth, social security information, and the actual crime on which they are convicted.

Having a permanent record can negatively impact an individual’s life in both the short and long-term, and should be fought using the strongest defense possible. Consequently, an individual should contact a drug defense lawyer immediately to begin working toward building a defense and mitigating the damage of the charge.

Common Charges

The most common examples of drug charges in New Haven that result in serious penalties are possession charges. Simply, that means when someone is in possession of a substance that has been classified as either a controlled substance or a narcotic.

Similarly, it is common to see individuals charged with possession with intent to sell. A charge of possession with intent to sell is when someone is in possession of a controlled substance or a narcotic and there is what the police refer to as indicia of sale. They use those indicia of sale to support the finding that the person intends to sell that particular substance or narcotic. Those indicia of sale can be having a large amount of cash, having multiple cellphones, having substance packaged, and having a scale. So, the police very often look to indicia of sale to establish possession with intent to sell.

Lastly, there are the charges of actual sale where there has been a hand-to-hand transaction. Very often, these cases involve confidential informants or undercover detectives working in a capacity where they engaged in a hand-to-hand transaction with an individual alleged to have sold narcotics in the past.

Short-Term Consequences

When charged with a drug crime in New Haven, a person will face some initial severe penalties. For example, just based on the mere arrest it is possible that an individual will be forced to pay a bond to be released. If they cannot pay that bond, the person will be detained while their case is pending.

Additionally, if an individual is released on bond, the court very often sets conditions on that release that include drug treatment, and random urine and drug screening. The court will require the individual to attend those drug counseling sessions. In addition, people arrested very often can find police blotter records. Even for very minor arrests, they can very often be found online or in newspapers and that can cause an individual to have issues with employment and embarrassment associated with an arrest. There are a number of consequences associated with the mere arrest in connection with the drug case.

Getting Charges Dropped

The state’s attorney has the ability to enter what is called a “Nolle” and they can do that at any stage of the case. However, it is very rare that it will happen right away. Typically, if a state is going to enter Nolle, it requires a number of steps on behalf of the defendant.

If a state is going to drop a charge, usually there are a number of conditions that the state will impose on the defendant and require them to do prior to the state entering the Nolle. Typically, although it could be dropped right away, it is very rare that a case will be dropped and not dropped very quickly.

Law Enforcement Mistakes

There are a number of issues that arise in any drug case that can lead to mistakes by the police, whether it has to do with the search of a property if it is an unconstitutional search, whether they fail to field test the alleged substance, or whether they fail to log the substance as evidence. Using these mistakes as part of a defense can help dismiss any penalties associated with a New Haven drug charge.

There are a number of mistakes that can be made that can lead to a beneficial outcome of a case. However, those mistakes are not routinely seen and are few and far between. It is important that a person has an attorney to review the reports, review the case, and see if any of those mistakes were made or if there are any legal issues that can be raised to challenge the arrest.

Enhanced Penalties

While according to state statutes, the penalties can be the same, New Haven courts handle different substances with varying severity. For example, marijuana is penalized less where as a case involving Heroin or prescription painkillers are treated more seriously.

The reason that the penalty is typically harsher for Heroin or prescription painkiller offenses is because of the impact that the prosecutors and judges see these substances having on the community. Recently in New Haven, there was a string of overdoses tied to Heroin that was laced with Fentanyl and prosecutors were trying to hit it hard with penalties.

Contacting an Attorney

If an individual is facing drug charges in New Haven or anywhere in Connecticut, they should contact an attorney immediately. The sooner the individual contacts a lawyer, the sooner they can start building their defense to attempt to reduce the consequences associated with their New Haven drug charge.