If you’re reading this now, chances are that you’ve just been charged with a drug-related crime or some kind of involvement in illegal activity involving drugs and need a Fort Worth drug lawyer. Unfortunately, from the outside looking in, it can be very easy to judge someone without adequate evidence to show their guilt. This is seldom more evident than when it comes to drug-related crimes.
You might be worried about the outcome and concerned for your future. You need a lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the law, since there are a number of factors to keep in mind in these situations, from affirmative links to potential mandatory minimum sentences. The first step to take is to seek out the counsel of an experienced Fort Worth drug lawyer.
Our Strategy in Fighting Your Charge?
Our strategy at Hoeller McLaughlin PLLC is simple: Be 100% committed to holding the State of Texas to the highest burden of proof – Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. That includes:
- Case Review & Investigation: The first part of the our defense starts with a thorough evaluation and investigation into the criminal allegation, including investigating the background of any potential witness to the case (criminal history or any past history that would help in your defense), reviewing for possible defenses (i.e. bad stop, bad search, bad links), and determining if the State can even prove their charge beyond a reasonable doubt.
- Expert Analysis: If necessary, our strategy also involves getting the best investigators and experts throughout Tarrant Country to aid in your defense (getting a second opinion on the lab results, Etc.)
- Mitigation: Any proper defense strategy includes helping our clients put themselves in the best light to be viewed by the State, the Judge, or a potential jury. This includes making sure our clients are getting the proper treatment or rehab (especially in drug related charges), if necessary, or being proactive about mitigating any damages.
Specific Questions Related to Drug Possession Charges:
- Did the police have reasonable suspicion or probable cause to come in contact with you (i.e. a traffic stop)?
- Did the police have probable cause to search and seize your property?
- If there was a search warrant, did law enforcement comply with Chapter 18 of the Code of Criminal Procedure and get a good warrant (sufficient probable cause and is not stale)?
- Can the police “affirmatively link” the drug/dope to you? For example, just being in a car where drugs are found is not necessarily enough of a link to convict a person beyond a reasonable doubt.
- Was the drugs/dope someone else’s?
- Was a CI (confidential informant) involved?
- Was there an issue with the drug test?
- Was a drug dog involved? How long did they take to get there?
Types of Drug Charges we Defend | You Don’t Have to Put Your Future at Risk
If you are convicted of a drug offense, you may be subject to very serious criminal penalties and collateral consequences. While some countries have decriminalized drugs and some states have legalized marijuana and/or THC, there are still significant consequences for possession and use in the U.S., especially in Texas. Some drug-related criminal offenses include:
FELONY DRUG CHARGES IN TEXAS WE DEFEND:
- Possession of Marijuana 4 ounces to 5 pounds (State Jail Felony)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance u/1 gram (State Jail Felony), including:
- Penalty Group 1 (Cocaine, Methamphetamine, Heroin)
- Penalty Group 2 (THC)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance Penalty Groups 1, 2, 3, and 4 – Felony Level Amounts, including, but not limited to:
- Possession of a Controlled Substance 1-4 grams (3rd Degree Felony)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance 4-200 grams (2nd Degree Felony)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance 200-400 grams (1st Degree Felony)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance over 400 grams (Super First Degree Felony)
- Delivery & Manufacturing of a Controlled Substance charges (Enhances the Underlying Possession by a one Degree)
- Felony Drug-Related Offenses (Evading Arrest or Detention in a Vehicle, Weapons & Gun Charges, Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, Engaging in Organized Crime)
MISDEMEANOR STATE DRUG POSSESSION CHARGES WE DEFEND:
- Possession of Marijuana u/2 ounces (Class B Misdemeanor)
- Possession of Marijuana 2-4 ounces (Class A Misdemeanor)
- Possession of Marijuana u/2 ounces in a School Zone (Class A Misdemeanor)
- Possession of a Controlled Substance u/28 grams Penalty Group 3 (Class A Misdemeanor)
- Misdemeanor Drug-Related Offenses (Evading Arrest, Weapons & Gun Charges, Fail to ID, Etc.)
What most people don’t realize is that there are two types of common drug charges, possession and possession with the intent to deliver. While both of these are felony offenses, a conviction for possession with intent to deliver carries more serious penalties.
The two main factors that go into determining the type of charge you’ll face are how much of the drug you allegedly had in your possession and whether or not you had anything else that might suggest you were planning to sell it or deliver it to someone else.
It’s important to keep in mind that Texas law enforcement officers will search your car and may even be looking for evidence that suggests drug distribution, like scales or baggies for packaging. They tend to also look at other factors, like if you had multiple separate bags of drugs present or if there was a large amount of cash on hand. They may also seize your phone to search for text messages or “dope notes”.
Regardless of what the circumstances were at the time of your arrest, it’s important to be honest with your drug lawyer about what happened and provide us with lots of details so we can successfully defend you.
Facing a drug-related conviction in Fort Worth is no laughing matter. These offenses could result in a felony conviction, hefty fines, and lengthy jail time. That’s why it’s so important to consult with an experienced drug lawyer as soon as you can if you’re being investigated or have been charged with a drug crime. This is true even if you know you’re innocent.
FIRST OFFENDER DRUG PROGRAM (FODP):
If this is the first time you have ever been arrested on a drug charge and you don’t have any prior criminal history, you may qualify for the First Offender Drug Program run through the Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney’s Office. Here is the link to their website for more information. If you successfully complete the FODP program, your drug possession charge will be dismissed and eligible for an expunction after a 1 year waiting period. Here is the list of charges that may qualify for the First Offender Drug Program:
The following offenses may be eligible for FODP:
- Possession of Controlled Substance under 1 gram (Meth, Heroin, Cocaine, THC)
- Possession of Controlled Substance, 1 – 4 grams (Meth, Heroin, Cocaine, THC)
- Possession of Controlled Substance under 2 ounces
- Possession of Marihuana under 2 ounces
- Possession of Marihuana, 2 – 4 ounces
- Drug-Free Zone, Controlled Substance under 28 grams
- Drug-Free Zone Marihuana 2 – 4 ounces
- Forging or Altering Prescription
- Possession of Dangerous Drug
- Diversion of a Controlled Substance
- Attempt of any above listed offenses
Texas’s Tough Drug Laws
Texas has some of the toughest drug laws in the country. Despite some States changing laws, marijuana and THC is still illegal. For simple possession of a controlled substance (like heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, or even THC), you could be charged with a felony and face up to two years in a state jail and $10,000 in fines. This is just for a small amount of drugs. If the manufacture or delivery of controlled substances is added, you’re likely to get hit with an even harsher sentence under Texas law.
One of the most common mistakes people who have been charged with drug crimes in Fort Worth make is assuming they can handle the situation on their own. While it’s true that many people charged with minor drug offenses in Texas are able to avoid jail time, there are a number of factors that can lead to a conviction, such as:
- The type and amount of drugs involved
- Prior convictions
- Whether you were near or at a school at the time of arrest
- Whether you were carrying a weapon
Reach Out for a Consultation with a Fort Worth Drug Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with a drug crime, it’s in your best interests to talk to a lawyer immediately. But don’t automatically assume the worst. A drug charge does not have to be the end of the world.
Your Fort Worth drug lawyer can help you understand your rights and responsibilities and plan a strategic defense strategy. Call Hoeller McLaughlin PLLC today at 817-334-7900, or check out our online contact form below to find out how a Fort Worth drug lawyer can assist you. Our goal is a dismissal.