Some people in New Jersey and elsewhere may not think that recreational drug use is a major issue. However, many substances are highly addictive, and for some individuals, a single use could result in a lifelong battle with addiction. If you or a loved one face criminal charges for drug possession or related allegations, it is a matter to handle with the utmost seriousness.
When a person has a drug abuse problem, it may seem as if they have no control over their usage or the need to get more of an illegal substance. While one should certainly meet addiction with compassion, it is not likely that such compassion will come from the court system. In fact, the potential repercussions could be quite steep.
What could happen after an arrest?
Though most people worry about facing a conviction for drug charges, it is important to keep in mind that the negative effects could start soon after an arrest. You may need to take time off work to attend court hearings, having meetings with your legal counsel or handle other case-related matters. As a result, your employer may not look too kindly on those requested days off. If an officer suspects you of driving under the influence of drugs, you could face immediate license suspension under certain circumstances.
Of course, worrying about the effects of a conviction is valid because sentencing for possession, distribution, manufacturing and other related crimes could have lasting effects, including the following:
- Significant monetary fines
- A jail or federal prison sentence
- House arrest
- Probation or parole
- Permanent marks on your criminal record that could influence future employment, voting rights, housing opportunities, military service opportunities and more
The exact outcomes you could face would depend on the substances involved, the amount of the substance, where authorities found the substance, whether you have previous arrests or convictions on your criminal record, and other extenuating circumstances.
Taking your case seriously
Even if you know someone who has faced drug-related criminal charges before and seemed to come out of the situation fairly well, it is crucial that you understand that your case and the unique details of it will affect the outcome of your situation. As a result, gaining information on your criminal defense options, how the circumstances of your predicament will affect your case and more could help you move forward as effectively as possible.