What To Expect From a Drug Case in Virginia Beach

Due to potentially severe consequences, it’s important that, if charged with a drug related offense, that you know what to expect from the legal process. The following are frequently asked questions on Virginia Beach drug charges answered by a Virginia Beach drug lawyer. To learn more about these or any other kind of charges in Virginia Beach call today and schedule a free consultation.

What Do The Prosecutors in Virginia Beach Need to Prove For a Drug Conviction?

First and foremost, the prosecutors have to prove that the substance at issue is actually what they are claiming it to be. If someone is charged with possession of marijuana, but then the lab result come back and all they’ve got is a baggy full of cooking herbs, obviously the charge is going nowhere.

Then, the prosecutors have to prove that the defendant was in possession of the substance at issue which can get tricky because the drugs are not always found directly on somebody and the case can go into issues of constructive possession versus actual possession.

So, the prosecutors have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was aware of the presence and character of the drug and also that they consciously possessed it which obviously if they’re not in actual possession it gets complicated. If they were at club that is nearby and then they have to prove that the defendant constructively possessed the drugs which can be difficult because ownership or occupation of premises where the drugs are located doesn’t necessarily create the presumption of possession.

So, any additional evidence is collected and considered as well such as phone records, witnesses, and paraphernalia. All of these goes for building a case against the defendant and proving that if the defendant did not have actual possession then he had to have constructive possession which is essentially just possession by circumstantial evidence.

Are Drug Cases in Virginia Beach Prosecuted Intensely?

It depends on the type of drug case. Simple possession will not be prosecuted as intensely as a higher offense of a felony drug charge. However, Virginia Beach does take all drug cases very seriously.

How Do The Judges Treat Drug Cases?

Judges in Virginia Beach take drug cases very seriously and will sentence repeat offenders to jail time if they feel it’s in the best interest of justice. They will agree to community service and probation for some misdemeanor charges, however for a felony drug charges, judges are known in Virginia Beach regularly to give out jail sentences without hesitation.

Are There Any Alternative Sentencing Options for First Time Drug Charges in Virginia Beach?

Virginia has a first offenders program which is considered a sort of second chance. The judge extends the case for probation which then allows the defendant to complete a series of requirements. These include twenty four hours of community service for misdemeanor, or one hundred hours of community service for a felony, successful completion of a treatment or education program, the requirement of  remaining drug and alcohol free throughout a probationary period,  submitting to random tests during the time and paying all of the costs associated with the deferred disposition.

This results in the charge being dismissed after all the requirements are completed. If the defendant completes this, however, and then goes on to commit another drug crime, then the original crime comes back full force.

These programs are really only recommended for people who truly are first and only onetime offenders.