While it is legal to some extent, marijuana possession still may be charged as a crime in California when an elevated amount of the substance is present. If you are accused of this offense, you might face steep fines, probation, and even jail time. People who have been arrested for marijuana possession should consult a drug crime attorney to protect their rights. With nearly 30 years of experience, San Diego marijuana possession lawyer Roseline D. Feral can guide you through each step of the legal process, using every tool available to minimize the impact of the criminal charge that you are facing.Understanding Marijuana Possession Laws in California
In California, recreational marijuana use by adults was legalized in 2016. This means that adults who possess a small amount of marijuana for personal use will not face criminal charges. Adults over the age of 21 may legally possess up to 28.5 grams of marijuana, or eight grams of concentrated cannabis. However, until 2018, they still will need a marijuana card to establish their legal use.
If you are in possession of marijuana between the ages of 18 and 20, the penalty is a $100 fine. If you are under the age of 18, you may be subject to mandatory drug counseling or community service in addition to the $100 fine. However, you may still be accused of an intent to sell, even if you have less than one ounce, if you have small bags, scales, or other tools that may suggest distribution.
Meanwhile, possession of marijuana in excess of 28.5 grams for personal use by people who are 18 and over is a misdemeanor charge that may result in up to six months in jail, $500 in fines, and probation if you are found guilty. Possession of marijuana by people who are 18 and over on the grounds of a K-12 school is a misdemeanor charge that may result in up to 10 days in jail and a $250 fine for the first offense. Possession with intent to sell is a felony, irrespective of how much marijuana you actually possessed. Being found guilty of this offense might land you in state prison for up to three years. If you were caught actually selling marijuana, you may face up to four years in state prison.
If you are charged with any of these offenses, however, a marijuana possession attorney in the San Diego area can help you mount any defenses that may be relevant in your case. One possible defense may hinge on arguing that the search and seizure that led to the discovery of the marijuana in your case was unlawful. Under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, as well as California law, people have a right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures by the police. While there are a few exceptions, this generally means that a person’s home, vehicle, and person may not be searched without probable cause or a valid search warrant issued by a judge. As a result, if a defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights were violated, there is a possibility that the drugs will not be useable as evidence against them in the case. This may lead to the charges being reduced or dismissed entirely.Contact a Marijuana Possession Lawyer in San Diego or Surrounding Cities
If you have been arrested for marijuana possession, you need to reach out to a criminal defense attorney who can help you determine your next steps. Roseline D. Feral is a trustworthy San Diego marijuana possession attorney who can help you understand the charges that you may be facing and the options that may be available to you. She also represents defendants in Chula Vista, Coronado, Del Mar, Carlsbad, Encinitas, La Jolla, Oceanside, Escondido, Ramona, Rancho Santa Fe, San Marcos, Valley Center, and Vista. To speak to us about your case, contact us online or call our office at 619-232-1010 for a consultation. Alternatively, you may reach Attorney Feral directly at 619-301-1191.