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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 118658
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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I was stopped in South Dakota for crossing the center line.

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I was stopped in South Dakota for crossing the center line. The police gave me PBT it was 0.040, my blood test was 0.017, I was arrested for zero tolerance. I was a pharmacy major, first month in school, giving some new friends a ride home. They had a bag of white powder and empty capsules in my car. I waived my Miranda rights to prove it was not cocaine, which it tested positive for, and gave a urine sample. I told them my friends made their own energy capsules for a mixture of caffeine and hordinine from GNC. I was charge with felony possesion of controlled substance. While waiting for the Public Health lab to confirm the substance I was presented to the grand jury and charged with felony possession of controlled substance. The lab report came back that the white substance was not a controlled substance but it should that I had tried THC with a level of 15ng/ml and no other controlled substances. Now I have this felony charge on my record and I am applying to a nursing program and worried about the charges on my record other than the misdemeanor for ingesting a controlled substance other than ETOH. My lawyer tried to get it expunged but the States Attorney refuses. When someone does a background check, will felony charge hurt my changes at anything? I realize the ingestion charge is there, but wish they had the results of the test back before they charged me with anything. Should I do an imposition of sentence for the misdemeanor so I can pursue my nursing career?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

If they are offering a suspended imposition of sentence on the misdemeanor in SD, then upon completion of the sentence the charges would be removed from your record. The problem is that with a felony, no medical facility will hire you, especially with a drug felony. With the Suspended Imposition, the charge is later removed from your record and you do not have to disclose it to anyone UNLESS they ask if you have ever had a suspended imposition of sentence, which the licensing boards can ask and you have to tell them and then they will review the circumstances and give you a change to explain the situation, since it would not be grounds to mandatory deny you licensing.

The Suspended Imposition, is generally the much safer bet than having the felony, because the felony would pretty much insure that you would not have any chance at all. Having a ingestion of marijuana (THC) and ETOH charge is much easier to explain to the board than a felony.

You need to explain to your attorney about the nursing issue and tell him that you do not need this to stop you from pursuing that career and to continue to try to press the DA to at least drop the misdemeanor down to only the ETOH and drop off the THC as that would make it even easier for you to explain away in your future to the licensing boards.

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