In the state of Arizona, whether you are in Phoenix or anywhere else, possession of a dangerous drug is a very serious offense. As per A.R.S. §13-3407, possession of a dangerous drug or use of a dangerous drug prohibits a person from knowingly possessing or using these types of drugs. In this instance, “dangerous drug” refers to any prescription narcotics or other kinds of drugs that are something other than marijuana. Usually, the drugs in question are heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine or a prescription drug that is highly addictive, such as an antidepressant or painkillers.
Here’s a short video where David Michael Cantor is explaining Dangerous Drug charges in Arizona:
Potential Punishment for Possession or Use of a Dangerous Drug
Punishment for use or possession of a dangerous drug is considered a class four felony. However, if the drug is something other than methamphetamine or an amphetamine and the individual has no prior convictions, the charge may be reduced to a class one misdemeanor. Certain types of drugs will earn the person a punishment of probation only for a first or second offense that is nonviolent. However, if the individual gets a third offense, it can mean he or she may only receive probation or jail time for two to four weeks. Some defendants end up having their charges resolved when they plead guilty to a misdemeanor, in which case a jail stay can last up to six months if they violate their probation or fail to comply with a TASC resolution.
TASC refers to an Adult Deferred Prosecution Program and can last from one to two years. A minimum of six months of group counseling (one day per week) is required, although some defendants are ordered to two meetings per week for six months or the requirement may be one three hour drug and alcohol abuse education class held on a single Saturday. The individual must also submit to urine testing, with the fees ranging from $2,000 to $2,500.
TASC is highly selective, so it is highly important to have a skilled attorney who can help you to get into the program. David Michael Cantor and his legal associates are extremely skilled at defending individuals who receive charges of possession of a dangerous drug. They are qualified Arizona drug crimes layers who have dealt with TASC personnel many times in the past and will strive to get you into the program, which can lessen the charges against you to a great extent. After your completion of the program, you will even have a dismissal of the charges from your record.
David Michael Cantor explains the TASC program in Arizona:
When the person has already taken the TASC program regarding a previous drug related charge, they are then deemed “TASC ineligible.” The only way the defendant is still eligible for the program is if he or she has one low level prior drug charge or has only done TASC once before. If the charges involved selling or transporting of drugs, driving under the influence of drugs, promoting prison contraband or any type of methamphetamine charge, the individual will have jail time or a prison sentence related to those charges.
Under Proposition 200, which depends on what type of drugs were involved, the defendant may receive a sentence that is for a first offense class four felony. Depending on the amount of drugs involved. The punishment can be probation with jail time from zero days to one year or a prison term of one year to three and three quarter years. With one prior felony conviction, the prison term is two to seven and a half years. With two prior convictions, it is six to 15 years of prison time.
In the instance the individual was found possessing a sizable amount of drugs (i.e. “Above the Statutory Threshold”), they can receive a prison sentence for a first offense. This includes nine grams of cocaine, methamphetamine, three quarter grams of crack, a half millimeter of LSD, one gram of heroin and four millimeters of PCP.
Defenses to Possession or Use of a Dangerous Drug in Arizona
The most important aspect to defending a drug possession case is showing that the defendant did not “knowingly” possess any drugs. This is commonly known as the “Lack of Knowledge” defense. We will also attack the prosecution’s positions regarding the “use” of drugs and our goal is to suppress the drug evidence thus making the prosecution’s case weak. We will also attack the State’s chemical testing equipment and the lab procedures regarding the identification of the drugs and the amounts contained. Because our firm is aggressive, we’ll use any possible defense available from a “Miranda Rights violation” to “Denial of Right to Counsel” and more.
Facing charges of Possession or Use of a Dangerous Drug in Arizona are serious and a good defense attorney will help to clear your name. We’ve handled dozens of these cases and have been successful in winning cases or having the charges reduced or dismissed entirely. To schedule a Free Case Review with an attorney in our office, call us 24 hours a day at (602) 737-2812 or use our secure and confidential email form.