Even with changing drug laws, people are being arrested for drugs every day.
The laws regarding drugs in North Carolina can be complicated, leading to the arrest of innocent people every day. There are many cases of being “guilty by association,” where innocent parties are dragged into situations they had nothing to do with.
Have you been arrested for drugs? Know somebody who has? You may be wondering where to go from here.
While it’s true that the state offers options for people who have been arrested for these sorts of crimes, having a game plan is always advisable. If you’re wondering what to do when it comes to drug arrests, read on. We’re here to help you.
Arrested for drugs in North Carolina?
The drug laws in North Carolina are very complex, and they can range from misdemeanors to felonies. If you are arrested on drug charges in North Carolina, you must first assess if your charge is a misdemeanor or a felony.
A misdemeanor can fall into three types:
- Misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia
- Misdemeanor possession of other drugs
- Misdemeanor possession of marijuana
You must also take into account the type of drug you were arrested for, as your charge and penalty will depend on this.
North Carolina separates drugs into 6 categories, known as schedules. Schedule I drugs such as heroin, LSD, ecstasy, and others carry the harshest penalties and are felonies. Marijuana and other drugs that offer a low addiction risk count as Schedule VI.
Look into first offender programs
If you are arrested for drugs in North Carolina and it’s your first offense, you may be eligible for first offender programs.
Be warned, though: if you have a legal defense to your charge, it would be safer to go through with your defense rather than take a first offender program.
First offender programs offer those arrested the chance to keep your record clean by taking part in 15 hours of drug and alcohol education.
At the completion of the program, you will have your case dismissed by the DA, and you’ll have the chance to have your charges expunged.
This program is not only available to people with misdemeanors; if you’re arrested on felony charges, you’ll have the opportunity to take part in the program as well, provided you’re a first-time offender. Those with felony charges must also complete 225 hours of community service.
Get legal representation
Regardless of whether or not your charge is a misdemeanor or a felony, the first thing you should do if you’re arrested under drug charges is seek legal council. This is the only way to fully understand the charges you are facing and to develop the best plan to avoid severe penalties.
When it comes to the law, the waters can be tricky to navigate. To avoid any misunderstanding or harsher penalties, consulting a qualified defense lawyer is recommended.
Do you have a loved one who has been arrested for drugs in North Carolina? Act now to secure their bail and develop a course of action.