Virginia Possession of Marijuana Lawyer
Virginia has become the first state in the South to legalize marijuana. However, there are various limitations to Virginia’s new marijuana laws. It is illegal for anyone to possess more than one ounce of marijuana. It is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to consume, purchase, or possess any amount of marijuana. Possession of more than one pound is classified as a felony. It is wise to consult a Virginia Possession of Marijuana Attorney if you have been charged with any marijuana offense.
NOTE: A marijuana charge is NOT a conviction.
Criminal Defense Attorneys Defend Marijuana Possession Cases
The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution applies to just about every marijuana possession case. This amendment protects the people from unreasonable government searches and seizures. Search and seizure issues are common in marijuana possession cases. In most cases, a “search” is conducted by the police without a search warrant. A search warrant is not required if there is a legal exception to the warrant requirement. An unlawful “search” typically results in dismissal of the case.
Marijuana Cases May Involve Insufficient Search & Seizure Evidence
Our attorneys examine the facts and circumstances surrounding your arrest, whether the police violated the Fourth Amendment, whether the police had a reasonable suspicion to stop you, whether any warrant was supported by probable cause, and whether any other violations may have tainted the seizure or admissibility of evidence the prosecution will attempt to use against you at trial. In many cases, we can prevail on a number of defense objections or motions, even if you think you are guilty.
Evidence of “Possession” is Not Always Sufficient to Convict
The prosecution is required to prove knowing or intentional possession of marijuana to secure a conviction. Possession also includes “constructive possession.” Constructive possession occurs when the defendant does not actually have the marijuana on their person or in their pocket. A possession of marijuana violation is still possible if the defendant had access to and control over the place where the marijuana was found. This often applies when marijuana is found in a vehicle during a traffic stop.
Distribution of Marijuana in Virginia is a Criminal Offense
Distribution of marijuana and/or the possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute or sell it is a criminal offense pursuant to Va. Code 18.2-248.1. This law has not changed as a result of Virginia legalizing certain types of marijuana possession. A violation of this law can be a misdemeanor or a felony. Weight alone is insufficient to prove an intention to distribute beyond a reasonable doubt. Our attorneys have extensive experience defending marijuana distribution cases. Let us review your case. We can help.
Marijuana Cases Involve Scientific Testing of Recovered Plant Material
Any plant material recovered by the police in a marijuana possession case must be tested. A skilled marijuana possession attorney knows how to best handle this issue. Some defenses in possession of marijuana cases are procedural that involve the Department of Forensic Science or the use of a “field test kit” by a police officer. In some cases, the plant material looks like marijuana, but may in fact actually be a herbal substance, a synthetic substance or hemp.
Richmond VA Possession of Marijuana DISMISSED
Our Possession of Marijuana Attorneys represented a client from Roanoke VA, who was in Richmond attending a concert at a popular local venue. The client was arrested for possession of marijuana in a nearby ally outside the venue. A small amount of plant material was recovered by the police during a search. The issue in the case was the admissibility of the “field test” result. We successfully argued that the prosecution did not follow the law in order for the “field test” result to be admissible. Case dismissed.
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11/10/2015 | Updated 6/27/2021