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Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26134
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by West
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i am 27 years old, and in SC, last night a drug dog hit on

Resolved Question:

i am 27 years old, and in SC, last night a drug dog hit on my car during a routine traffic stop for a busted light, upon search the cops found 1/8th of a gram of marijuana and a pipe.

they let me go on my way with a $500 paraphernalia and $600 simple possession charge.

I drive for a living for a government contract carrying people to the doctor for medicare and medicaid. I don't want to lose my job for being found in posession of someone elses drugs.. what is my best line of action for this? Will this make me ineligible for DOT certification next summer?

I am looking towards maybe pre trial intervention, or deferred judgement, not really sure my best line of action at the moment.
Thank you for you help.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Roger replied 9 months ago.

Roger : Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Criminal Law litigation attorney. Thanks for your question. I'll be glad to assist.
Roger : Your best option is to try and enter into a pre-trial diversion program or a deferred adjudication process in order to keep the charges off of your record and avoid a conviction.
Roger : If you do this and complete the program, the charges will erased from your record and you should have no issues with this in the future.
Roger : If these charges weren't deferred or if you didn't engage in a pre-trial diversion program, you could face problems with getting a DOT certification.
Customer:

how does one go about doing that? do i just go to the court house monday morning and tell them i want to enroll in pti? or do i wait for my court date?

Roger : The best way to get this done is to consult a local attorney who can talk to the prosecutor and get a deal worked out, and then when you go to court, your attorney can announce the agreement to the judge for approval.
Customer:

if i go ahead and pay the fine tomorrow, will that negate my ability to sign up for pti or deferred adjudication?

Roger : The court clerk can't help you with this, and the prosecutor likely won't speak to you before the hearing, so getting an attorney will allow you to get this done asap.
Roger : If you pay the fine before the court date, it may waive your right.
Roger : It'd be better to consult an attorney about your options and then try to cut a deal with the prosecutor. You may still have to pay the fines, but it's better to wait and see what deal you can reach.
Customer:

do you know any attorneys in south carolina you can reccommend?

Customer:

and if i go through pti, and a lawyer, do you think this $1100 charge will balloon over $5000

Roger : We can't recommend a specific attorney, but I can direct you to visit Martindale-Hubbell's website (www.martindale.com) and search for an attorney in your area.
Customer:

i appreciate it.

Roger : When you go to the site, click on "I Want to: Find a Lawyer or Law Firm" and then enter your search criteria.
Customer:

is this something i should not attempt in anyway to represent myself on?

Roger : The problem with trying to represent yourself is that you generally can't get anything done before the trial/hearing date, and then it's difficult to work something out.
Customer:

so i run the risk of a 1100 fine turning into 30 days jail time?

Roger : It's usually worth hiring an attorney to get a deal reached and then you just walk into court on the day of the hearing and announce to the judge what you're going to do.
Roger : Or both.
Customer:

damn

Customer:

thanks for enlightening me to this actually being serious.

Customer:

do lawyers usually do payment plans, or is it a cash in advance industry?

Roger : It's more serious because of the long term affects a conviction could have on you - - that's why it's usually worth getting an attorney to prevent any extended damage.
Roger : Most attorneys will allow a payment plan, with a deposit being paid up front.
Customer:

is there any chart/table you could refer me to, so i could have a rough estimate on legal fees, that way i will know if a local attorney is trying to take advantage of my pocket book?

Customer:

i thank you for your timely response, i will definitely give you an excellent rating.

Roger : There's no chart that I'm aware of, but the best way to see who is reasonable is to find 4-5 lawyers and then call and see what they charge, how they want to be paid, etc.
Customer:

do you think it will top over 2k? i know you cant answer that definitively, but through your observations, is it unlikely to go higher than that?

Roger : There will likely be a great difference between prices - - some attorneys don't need the money, so they make it worth their while in order to take a case, and some other attorneys need money and are willing to do it for less.
Roger : $1500-$2000 would be my guess.
Customer:

okay thats doable, anything approacing 5 isnt.

Customer:

if i pay in advance i might even be able to work a deal with them too as i have 3k sitting in a safe

Roger : That's right. It's negotiable, and if you show up with cash, it's hard to turn that down.
Customer:

thank you very much Roger. I appreciate you not giving me copy and paste answers. so much.

Customer:

i can sense you actually read more than 4 words of my sentences. I really like that.

Roger : No problem! Glad to help.
Customer:

have a good afternoon.

Roger : Thanks for letting me help, and if you need something further, just let me know.
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26134
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by West
Roger and 14 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you

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