Orlando Marijuana Possession Defense Attorney

 

possession of marijuana in florida

Marijuana is one of the most widely used drugs in the country and despite its recent legalization for medical use, it is still illegal for recreational use in Florida. As a result, those found in possession of marijuana will be arrested and prosecuted by the state. As someone facing drug charges, you may feel as if your options are limited, but it’s vital to know that legal professionals are standing by ready to fight for your rights.

If you were arrested for possession of marijuana, you may not know what is going to happen next. Fortunately, the experienced defense attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm do. We are here to make sure an arrest on marijuana charge does not haunt you for the rest of your life.

What is Considered Possession of Marijuana in Orlando?

Possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana is a felony in Florida. Depending on the quantity of marijuana and other factors, you could face more serious charges such as possession with intent to sell, drug sales and delivery, or drug trafficking.

Per Florida Statute § 893.13, possession of cannabis under 20 grams is a first-degree misdemeanor in Florida. However, even a misdemeanor conviction can be severely damaging as you would be required to disclose that record every time you apply for a job. It may even be used as grounds for termination if you are currently employed. If you are a student, it could result in loss of eligibility for student grants and loans which may result in you having to pay for schooling out of pocket. Such issues, however, should be the least of your worries as a misdemeanor conviction for marijuana possession carries serious criminal penalties.

Penalties For Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession

  • First-Degree Misdemeanor: Up to one year in jail and fines up to $1,000
  • Second-Degree Misdemeanor: Up to 60 days in jail and fines up to $500

Penalties for Felony Marijuana Possession

  • First-Degree Felony: Up to 30 years in prison and fines up to $200,000
  • Second-Degree Felony: Up to 15 years in prison and fines up to $10,000
  • Third-Degree Felony: Up to five years in prison and fines up to $5,000

Recent Case Result

Controlled Substance Felony Charges Diminished

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Client hired us for possession of controlled substance, third degree felony. He was caught with a vape pen. He got the vape pen as a Christmas gift. His friend hoped it would help him with his hand pain from years of working construction. Client was a two-time convicted felony caught with various drugs in the past so the State’s initial offer of course included a felony conviction. Problem is, client drives for work and any conviction of a chapter 893 charge (drugs) carries a mandatory 1-year license suspension. We had no leverage to demand a withhold. This was an open and shut possession arrest. However, we were able to work the State down from a felony conviction to a withhold of adjudication using mitigation and persistence, no probation, and a $500 fine. Client and his wife were so happy when they left the courtroom they cried. We were also able to help advise them on how to begin the process to get his medical marijuana card and he’s already been pre-approved.

Possible Defense Strategies for Possession of Marijuana

As your legal counsel, it is our responsibility to present defense options for the charges you face. Marijuana charges, in particular, have numerous applicable defenses as such cases oftentimes hinge on search and seizure issues. A few common areas to look into when crafting a defense include:

  • If the seizure of drug evidence resulted from a vehicle stop, was the stop legal?
  • Did police have a right to search your vehicle?
  • Were you read your Miranda rights?
  • Were you in exclusive possession of the vehicle or premesis?
  • In constructive possession cases, did you have dominion and control over the substance?
  • Did you lawfully possess the cannabis?
  • Is there a proper chain of custody for introducing the substance into evidence?
  • Was evidence tampering or destruction of evidence involved?
  • Was there an unsubstantiated K-9 search?

Your criminal defense lawyer can present a case on your behalf that avoids probation, drivers license suspension, and possible incarceration. Through the implementation of proven effective defense strategies like questioning the weight of the State’s case and police conduct, we can have penalties reduced to a small fine instead of jail time. Possessing a medical marijuana card can also crumble the State’s case individual’s who suffer from anxiety or PTSD are often issued medical marijuana cards to legally possess and use cannabis in Florida.

Depending on your criminal history, you may also be eligible for first-offender treatment which could resolve the charges without a conviction and in many cases result in charges being dropped or dismissed.

Contact an Orlando Marijuana Possession Lawyer

An arrest on marijuana charges is a big deal because you have a life ahead of you. If you are convicted, you could end up facing severe penalties that include driver’s license suspension, probation or jail time, and a permanent criminal record.

Our team of Orlando marijuana possession defense attorneys at The Umansky Law Firm has over 100 years of combined legal experience and has represented juveniles and adults arrested on marijuana charges throughout the Central Florida area. Contact us today at 407-228-3838 for a free case evaluation.