Virginia Beach Possession of Controlled Substances Defense Attorney
Possession of controlled substances is against the law in Virginia, as outlined in (§ 18.2-250), unless the individual has a valid prescription from their medical provider. The penalties for a drug possession conviction vary depending upon the type of drug that was found and how it is classified. In severe cases, a conviction for unlawful drug possession can lead to jail time, fines, and other penalties.
If you have been charged with possession of a controlled substance in Virginia Beach, you should immediately hire a reputable criminal defense lawyer to represent you. Virginia drug laws are complex, and in order to mount an effective challenge to the prosecution’s case, you are going to need legal assistance.
At Pincus Goodman, P.C., our Virginia Beach drug possession defense attorneys have a strong track record of helping clients obtain favorable results in drug possession cases. Our lawyers will help you craft a robust counter-argument and fight for your charges to be reduced or dismissed. Contact our office by phone at (757) 306-9634 to schedule a consultation.
Types of Controlled Substances
Under Virginia’s Drug Control Act, drugs are scheduled into six distinct categories. Schedule 1 drugs are considered to be the most dangerous and addictive, while Schedule 6 drugs are considered the least hazardous for human consumption. Here are the six drug classifications:
- Schedule 1 – Schedule 1 drugs are considered to be the most addictive and generally do not have any legitimate medical uses. They include ecstasy, GHB, heroin, and LSD.
- Schedule 2 – While some Schedule 2 drugs have medical uses, these drugs are considered to be very addictive. They include morphine, cocaine, PCP, methadone, oxycodone, and methamphetamine.
- Schedule 3 – Schedule 3 drugs are also extremely addictive but are more commonly used in medical settings than Schedule 2 drugs. Ketamine, hydrocodone, and certain steroids are included in this class of drugs.
- Schedule 4 – Schedule 4 drugs have a moderate risk of addiction and include Xanax, Ativan, and other benzodiazepines.
- Schedule 5 – Schedule 5 drugs are considered to be mildly addictive. Some Schedule 5 drugs are used to treat colds but require a legitimate prescription. Codeine is a Schedule 5 drug.
- Schedule 6 – Schedule 6 drugs used to include marijuana, which is now legal to possess in certain amounts in Virginia. Drugs and drug compounds (which may include stimulants and depressant drugs not included in other schedules) in this category have little to no risk for addiction.
Virginia is one of just a few states that have six drug schedules, while most states have only adopted five. Unlawful possession of Schedule 6 drugs is not considered to be a serious crime and carries the most lenient sentence (a fine of $250).
Punishments for Possession of Controlled Substances in Virginia
If you are convicted of possessing a Schedule 1 or 2 controlled substance, you would be guilty of a Class 5 felony (with some exceptions). Class 5 felonies are punishable by one to ten years in prison OR (at the judge’s or jury’s discretion) imprisonment for no more than 12 months and/or a maximum fine of $2,500.
Possession of a Schedule 3 controlled substance is a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail, up to $2,500 in fines, or both. Possession of a Schedule 4 controlled substance is a Class 2 misdemeanor. Penalties include a prison sentence of up to six months and a fine of not more than $1,000, or both. Unlawful possession of a Schedule 5 drug is a Class 3 misdemeanor (punishable by a fine of $500), and unlawful possession of a Schedule 6 drug is a Class 4 misdemeanor.
Contact a Virginia Beach Drug Crimes Defense Attorney Today
If you’ve been charged with a drug-related offense in Virginia Beach, contact Pincus Goodman, P.C., right away to discuss your case. We will work to formulate a winning defense on your behalf. Depending on the circumstances of your case, we might be able to persuasively argue that the drugs belonged to someone else, show evidence of police misconduct, demonstrate that you are a victim of entrapment, or even force the prosecution to prove that the drugs were actually illegal to possess.
To get started on your defense today, contact our Virginia Beach team today for a consultation by calling (757) 306-9634.