Common Drug Charges in Virginia Beach

As a drug lawyer in Virginia Beach, one of the most common scenarios I’ve seen in when is pulled over for some things such as speeding or expired tags or really any other traffic infractions and then, the police officer says that he smells marijuana in the vehicle.

This leads to the vehicle being searched, marijuana being found, and then finally results in a driver being charged with possession of marijuana found in their car. Obviously, I can’t personally support illegal drug usage, but if you must, do not do it in the car. Other times, the police just get lucky and will stumble upon someone smoking in a public park or on the beach is a really common location here.

Virginia Beach sees a lot of tourists so it’s not uncommon to see police investigate the smell of marijuana coming from a hotel room especially in the summer time or around spring break when there are a lot more people here that aren’t local. And if someone is found with  baggies or scales or anything that would imply the drugs were not just for personal use, then they can be charged with the intent to distribute as well.

This also happens when there’s a large amount of the drug found, the logic being that if it was just for personal use, then they would only have a small personal use amount.

What Determines The Severity of The Drug Charge?

Typically, the amount in possession of the time of arrest. A large quantity of a drug is going to be a much bigger deal than just enough of a drug found on a person. Also, the defendant’s prior record will come into play. Someone who has multiple drug charges on their record isn’t going to get any sympathy from anyone, while someone without a record can argue this is a one-time mistake that’s not going to happen again and potentially get a second chance.

The type of drug at issue is also really important. If someone is charged with possession with intent to distribute schedule 1 or 2 drug which are the bigger ones like heroin and cocaine and meth or more than half an ounce of marijuana, then it becomes a felony instead of just a misdemeanor.

If a significant amount of the substance crosses state line, then it’s even more serious because then it becomes an issue for federal court. Charges of distribution, sale, and manufacturing are also treated a lot more seriously than crimes of simple schedule – simple controlled substance possession and the harshest penalties are given to people with a very large amount of schedule 1 or 2 drugs which causes them to face a mandatory minimum of five years and they can actually spend up to life in prison for it.