Bridgeview Drug Possession Defense Lawyer Offers Strong Advocacy
Established firm fighting drug possession charges in Illinois
Throughout the country and in Illinois, legislators have been rethinking the propriety of imposing long prison sentences on individuals who violate drug possession laws. However, Illinois has not enacted any major changes yet, so you could still spend years behind bars even if you are only caught with an amount of a controlled substance consistent with personal use. At Skinner Law Firm, P.C. in Bridgeview, attorney Steven E. Skinner II is an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to challenge the allegations and evidence presented by the authorities in drug possession prosecutions.
How long can you be incarcerated for drug possession?
Even in small amounts, it is still a felony to possess the most dangerous controlled substances, such as cocaine, heroin and hallucinogens. A sentence for low-level possession might be incarceration for one to three years as a Class 4 felony. If you are found with between 15 and 99 grams, it is a Class 1 felony count carrying a sentence of four to 15 years. Possession offenses involving higher amounts are punished even more harshly, so it is critical to retain a proven drug crime defense attorney as soon as possible after your arrest.
Can drug charges be dropped?
Depending on the circumstances in your drug possession case, you might be able take advantage of a pre-trial diversion option that focuses on treatment and addiction prevention rather than punishment. Commonly referred to as “drug school” in Cook County, this program is meant for defendants with no prior felony or drug offenses. By attending 10 hours of classes, you could have the charges against you dismissed as long as you are not arrested during the course of the program. If you are dealing with a drug or alcohol problem, TASC (Treatment Alternatives for Safe Communities) probation might be the right solution. Under this program, you could avoid incarceration and eventually have the conviction removed from your record. Our firm is dedicated to making a positive difference for people accused of drug crimes so they can overcome their problems and move forward with the life they want.
How does a defense lawyer challenge a drug possession allegation?
Some individuals accused of drug possession give up their rights because they believe that no potential legal defense exists. This could be a big mistake, because you may be able to avoid harsh penalties even if the evidence against you seems strong. After investigating the facts in your case, we can advise on possible defenses such as:
- Unlawful seizure of evidence — Strict rules exist regarding the collection of evidence by law enforcement. If the police invaded your privacy without the required authorization, the evidence they collected could be excluded from a potential trial.
- Improper stop or arrest — No matter what they discover later on, police officers who make a stop without a reasonable, articulable suspicion of criminal activity or who arrest someone without probable cause are acting outside the law. As an experienced criminal defense attorney, Steven E. Skinner II will examine the circumstances surrounding your arrest in order to determine whether or not it was lawful.
- Lack of knowledge — A drug possession conviction requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knew they were carrying an illegal controlled substance. A car passenger, shared jacket or roommate’s stash could lead to an unfair charge.
Don’t be intimidated by the authorities and accept the charges against you. Our firm will protect your fundamental rights and make sure you understand your legal options before deciding how to approach your case.
Contact a Cook County drug possession defense lawyer to set up a free consultation
Skinner Law Firm, P.C. advocates on behalf of Illinois clients who have been accused of drug possession and other criminal defenses. Please call 312-635-6459 or contact us online for a free consultation regarding your case. Our office is in Bridgeview.