Virginia Beach First Time Drug Charges

When charged with a drug-related offense in Virginia Beach, the lowest Schedule V substances are a $250 fine, but things like cocaine or heroin can carry anywhere from one to ten years in prison. If an individual is suspected of distributing these substances, that can trigger up to 40 years in prison for a first offense.

There are certain circumstances where there is a mandatory minimum jail time that the individual could be looking at. As to marijuana, an individual’s first offense on marijuana carries the possibility of up to 30 days in jail and then every offense after that is a maximum of 12 months in jail.

If you are facing first-time drug charges in Virginia Beach, it is critical that you contact a Virginia Beach drug attorney to begin preparing a defense to effectively combat your charge.

Virginia Beach Drug Citations

Paraphernalia is a misdemeanor drug charge in Virginia Beach. The closest thing to that is a Schedule V charge, which would be something like cough medicine, or substances that have codeine in them; over-the-counter medications, essentially.  Those charges are considered Class 4 misdemeanors, so they are technically misdemeanors but they do not carry jail time so they are the equivalent of citations.

After the Arrest

After being arrested for first-time drug charges in Virginia Beach, the individual is likely going to be taken into custody. If it is just possession of marijuana, then they may give the individual a summons and send them on their way. However, if it is cocaine or heroin, the individual is going to get arrested and taken into a custody and go in front of a magistrate.

Depending on an individual’s criminal record, they may or may not be given a bond. If they are going through an overdose or they are on the substance at the time, they may be held in custody while they are still on the drug. At that point, the individual is going to go in front of the judge and the judge is going to hear all the evidence pertaining to the individual’s first-time drug charge in Virginia Beach.

Administering the Charge

The administration of the charges in a first-time Virginia beach drug charge is split between the arresting officer and the prosecutor. Usually, what will happen if it is a simple possession at a traffic stop or something like that, the police officer will make the charges right then and there. If it is a more complicated case, if there are more people involved and it is a distribution situation, the first time drug charges are going to come from the Virginia Beach prosecutor, the commonwealth’s attorney.

Hypothetically, if the officer is not certain what the substance the individual has, but they believe it is illegal, then that will be made by the prosecutor after it has been sent for analysis at the state’s crime lab.

Assuming an individual is arrested and their criminal record is run, the Virginia Beach first-time drug charge would show up as pending, with perhaps an offense date, but it will not have any court dates or a disposition listed.