In Texas, drug possession charges are serious legal matters with potential life-altering consequences. While the Lone Star State has stringent drug laws, there are some avenues that may lead to charges being dismissed.
Each case is unique, but The Bearden Law Firm is skilled in helping clients choose the right legal strategy for their defense. Understanding drug possession laws and the potential consequences can help you secure a better outcome when facing drug possession charges.
To better understand the process of getting a drug possession charge dropped in Texas, it’s helpful to begin with a clear understanding of the state’s drug possession laws. Texas categorized drug offenses into different penalty groups based on the type and quantity of the drugs involved.
Understanding the penalty groups and how these crimes may be classified will help you determine your chances of getting the charges dropped and what legal defenses are available.
Group 1: Includes cocaine, Rohypnol, methamphetamine, ketamine, opium, and others.
Group 1-A: Includes lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and others.
Group 2: Includes MDMA (Ecstasy or Molly) and other hallucinogens.
Group 2-A: Includes synthetic cannabinoids and other compounds or mixtures containing natural or synthetic substances. Marijuana is also listed in this penalty group due to its THC content.
Group 3: Includes diazepam, Xanax, Ritalin, and others.
Group 4: Includes buprenorphine, butorphanol, and others.
Having even a small amount of a controlled substance in your possession can result in a drug possession charge. The severity of the charge and potential consequences will vary depending on the type of drug, the penalty group, and the amount.
In addition, a simple possession charge is less severe than possession with intent to distribute.
Texas classifies possession offenses as either misdemeanors or felonies. Felony charges are more serious and may carry more severe penalties. The classification depends on several factors, including the type of drug, quantity, and whether there was an intent to distribute.
While getting a drug possession charge dropped in Texas can be challenging, there are some factors and circumstances that may work in your favor. Attorney Jim Sharon Bearden will look for these elements in your case and help craft a specific defense strategy.
Some of the most common elements that could lead to the charges being dismissed include:
The prosecution must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt for you to be convicted of a crime. If the state lacks strong evidence, it can weaken the prosecution’s case or potentially lead to dismissal.
A lack of sufficient evidence may be due to issues with the search and seizure process, chain of custody of evidence, or unreliable witnesses. Remember, any evidence obtained illegally won’t be admissible in court. So, if you were pulled over for no reason or subjected to an unlawful search, the resulting evidence could be thrown out.
If your rights were violated at any point, it could be grounds for the case to be dismissed. For example, if the police pulled you over or searched you without probable cause, it could mean the evidence against you was obtained illegally.
In some cases, completing pre-trial diversion or drug court programs may lead to charge dismissal. These programs focus on rehabilitation and treatment rather than punishment.
Mistakes in the testing or analysis of substances seized as evidence can call the integrity of the evidence into question and potentially lead to dismissal. Your attorney will look for errors and signs of mishandling that could be used as part of your defense.
Providing substantial cooperation to law enforcement, such as assisting in the apprehension of higher-level drug offenders, may lead to reduced charges or even dismissal.
A skilled and experienced defense attorney, like local judge and attorney Jim Sharon Bearden, can challenge the validity and reliability of evidence, potentially leading to charge dismissal or reduced penalties.
In Texas, the legal system recognizes that not all individuals charged with drug possession are best served by incarceration. As a result, the state has established pre-trial diversion programs and drug courts as alternatives to traditional prosecution. These programs aim to address the root causes of drug-related offenses and offer a path to rehabilitation, reducing the likelihood of recidivism.
In some cases, participating in these programs can result in the charges being dropped or at least reduced penalties for offenders.
Pre-Trial Diversion Programs are typically available to first-time, non-violent drug offenders. Instead of facing prosecution, eligible individuals may be given the opportunity to enter a diversion program. Successful completion can lead to the dismissal of charges. These programs typically involve drug education, counseling, and regular check-ins with authorities.
Drug Courts are specialized court dockets designed to handle substance abuse cases. Defendants with drug addictions can often participate in drug court rather than facing traditional criminal proceedings. The focus is on treatment and rehabilitation; successfully completing these programs can lead to reduced or dismissed charges.
Navigating a drug possession charge in Orange, TX, requires not only a clear understanding of the law but also strategic advocacy. At The Bearden Law Firm, our team is skilled in criminal defense and Texas drug possession law.
Whether it’s understanding the nuances of drug possession laws, leveraging factors that may
lead to charge dismissal or exploring alternative programs like pre-trial diversion and drug courts, we’re here to provide the knowledge and support you need.
Don’t face these challenges alone. Reach out to Attorney Jim Sharon at The Bearden Law Firm today to discuss a legal defense strategy tailored to you and your case.
Call us at 409-883-4501 or use our online contact form for a consultation.