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Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 1059
Experience:  Managing Attorney at a Law Firm
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My son and his friend were sitting on the side of the road

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My son and his friend were sitting on the side of the road and the police pull up and ask him to step out of the car and he did they search him and found nothing on him but they told him the smell marijuana. so that gave the right to reach his car the friend in the back but pot in the ashtray of my son car so they all them a ticket come to court. i don't know if my son needs a lawery at this time. this is what i see on the ticket (HT 2 GRAM OR 20 GRAM ROSSESSION OF DRUG PARPOHAND) SECTION 893.13 (6) (13) 893,147-1 THIS IS WHATS ON THE CITATION.
JA: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in? And when did this happen?
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: NO

Good morning, I am a Criminal Defense attorney and former Prosecutor for the State Attorney's Office, and I'll be answering your questions today. Keep in mind this is for informational purposes only and we do not have an attorney-client relationship. Please allow me just a few minutes to review your question, thank you!

It appears from the information you shared that your son has been charged with both the possession of marijuana AND possession of drug paraphernalia.

The possession of paraphernalia charge is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail, and/or up to $1,000 in fines.

The possession of marijuana charge can be either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the amount of marijuana there was. Under 20 ounces, is a misdemeanor punishable by the same amount of time I listed above.

As far as whether your son should have an attorney -- yes, my recommendation would be that you hire an attorney for him as soon as possible. Especially considering that these charges expose him to a possible 2 year prison sentence, and the negative effects that a criminal conviction can have on future school and employment opportunities.

He may have valid legal defenses to this claim, and may be able to argue that he was not in constructive possession of these drugs, if his friend had actual possession over them.

Alot depends on the specific facts and details of his case, and about what exactly happened at the time they were stopped by police, whether proper criminal procedure was followed, if his rights were violated in any way, etc.

If this is his first ever criminal offense, then he also qualifies for pre trial diversion which is a program in which he attends rehabilitative drug classes, community service hours, and/or a fine -- then upon successful completion of the program, the charges against him are dismissed. This program is reserved for first time offenders only, as a means of providing a second chance, and at keeping a criminal conviction of off your son's record.

I hope that helps!

Please let me know if you have any other questions. Also, please take a moment to rate me using the stars at the top of the page, as it's the only way experts are compensated for our time on the site. I do not receive a salary here at JustAnswer, and am only compensated for my time after receiving a rating of 3 stars or more (5 stars are always appreciated). The question won't close after rating, so you can still ask follow-up questions after. Thanks, ***** ***** it!

Hi! Just checking in to see if you have any more questions? I hope I was able to address all of your concerns. Please let me know, I'm here to help. Thanks!

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