If you have been arrested in Maryland for possession or distribution of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS), your life could go seriously downhill. You could face serious jail time, large fines, and even deportation. You could have to live with a public criminal record that could have adverse effects for the rest of your life. You could lose the right to have your children live with you.
Here are some common questions people ask when charge with a drug related offense:
Am I going to jail?
Often times a period of incarceration can be suspended. If you have an attorney who knows the system and can negotiate with the State’s Attorney, you may even be able to avoid a permanent public record of your arrest and/or conviction. There are also diversion programs or “Drug Court” which can be alternatives to jail or even conviction.
Does it matter if I have a prior record?
Yes. If this is your first arrest/conviction, the court can often be convinced to reduce your charges, or even give you a “probation before judgment” (PBJ), which can later be expunged (the public record of your arrest/conviction gets essentially erased). If you do have a prior record, the court is less likely to be lenient with you. Either way, it is important that you have an attorney fight for your rights.
Do I have to speak to the police or the State’s Attorney?
No. You have a Constitutional right to refuse to speak to them, and to have an attorney advise you if you have been arrested and charged with a crime. It will most probably NOT help your situation to speak with them.
Do I need a lawyer?
The chances are hiring an attorney will help you achieve a better result. An attorney knows what to expect and can likely better prepare your defense, including getting you involved in programs that may convince the court to give you another chance. Attorney Michael Cochran has experience defending drug possession and distribution charges, and has appeared in Baltimore City and County, Howard County, Montgomery County and Frederick County District and Circuit Court.
If you have been arrested for a drug offense in Baltimore or anywhere in Maryland, call Michael at 240.463.2512 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org