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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27766
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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I am being charged with HS 11379a and HS 11357b. Im a F/T

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I am being charged with HS 11379a and HS 11357b. I'm a F/T student at UC Irvine and have never been in trouble before. I know that I need to seek an attorney but was wondering if there's a possibility of getting them to drop the 11379 and plead to the 11357b?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 5 years ago.
Hello Jacustomer,

A DA certainly has the power to dismiss the top count, which would enable you to be eligible for a diversion program that could keep the crime off of your record. That said, he has to be inclined to want to do that. One way to help make that come about you have already anticipated. The quicker you find yourself a criminal attorney with a lot of narcotics experience, the quicker he can work backstage on this to help an offer like that come about.

Along with that, of course the facts and circumstances of the case have to give your lawyer something to work with. The more ammunition he has, the better your chances of getting what you want. The facts would include such things as the amount of drugs in your possession -- the more, the less likely that it could be just simple possession and the stronger the DA's case against you -- whether there were any search issues, where the drugs were found and if there was any possibility from the circumstances that they may not be yours, and so on.

In other words, the stronger the state's case, the more cards the DA is holding in his hand. The two best things that you have going for you right now is that this is your first contact with the criminal justice system and that you have made bail. The DA knows that you are not likely to want to dispose of this with a jail sentence, so unless it's a very strong case, he might be willing just to settle for a paper conviction. The most damaging thing going against you, and I don't know that it applies, is if the police found you with the contraband on school grounds. If that is the case, in my experience, your lawyer will have an uphill battle getting rid of the top charge.
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