Under Plainview law, it must be proven that an individual being charged with an intent to distribute an illegal substance must have possession of the drug, and the intent to distribute the drug. Possession is defined as the care, custody, and control of a drug. Intent could be referred to as mens rea, or a person’s mental desire to distribute the drug.
The prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the individual in question is intending to distribute the drug. Speculating on an individual’s intention may be an intricate process. If you have been charged with an offense of possession with an intent to distribute, it may be prudent to enlist the aid of a Plainview drug possession with the intent to distribute lawyer. A well-versed drug lawyer who could examine the facts and provide a strong legal defense.
Possession vs Possession With Intent
Initially, the arresting police officer might make a judgment call on whether or not the individual appears to have an intent to distribute the drug. After being arrested, the district attorney’s office will decide what category to file the case in. Most of the time, in Plainview that decision could be based upon the weight of the drug. If the individual was arrested with less than a gram, the case is usually filed under as a possession of a controlled substance because it may not be a distributable amount. The case still may be filed as an intent to distribute, but the likelihood of this outcome might be slim.
How the Volume of Drugs Can Impact a Case
If the amount of drugs in question is extremely high, the case could be filed under an intent to distribute. For example, if an individual was found carrying 400 grams of an illegal substance, the district attorney’s office could say that no single person would use 400 grams by themselves.
Cases that are less extreme and in the middle range may get more complicated. For example, anything along the lines of 4.5 grams, six grams, seven grams may lead to a battle between whether the substance was obtained for personal use or for the intention of distribution.
A Plainview drug possession with the intent to distribute lawyer could examine the amount of drugs in question and work to potentially mitigate the charges an individual may face.
Constructive possession means an individual may not have the drug in their pocket, but they have the care, custody, and control of the drugs. For example, an individual who may have drugs in their storage locker is the only one who can access them in and out of the locker and knows they were the ones who put the drugs there. In cases of actual possession means, the individual has the drugs in their pocket.
Facing Both Allegations
While individuals could be charged with both offenses, oftentimes, they are charged with the higher offense. In certain circumstances, an individual may initially get charged with possession of a controlled substance with the intent to distribute but may have the charge lowered if:
- A plea bargain is made
- They are charged with the lower offense through the result of a trial
- The district attorney’s office could be entitled to a jury instruction to a lesser included charge.
A Plainview drug possession with the intent to distribute lawyer could help a person build a defense for both charges.
Common Scenarios Leading to Drug Charges
Police offers may set up an undercover buy with an officer, where the officer tries to buy or sell a drug to an individual. Or, a confidential informant may be sent in to buy the drugs from the individual.
A confidential informant, or CI, is an informant whose identity is a secret. The CI may usually be an individual involved in the drug activities as a user or someone who may have already been arrested and is attempting to reduce or clear the charges they are facing by helping the police catch another individual in the act of possession.
An officer could also see two individuals making a transaction in plain view and make an arrest. Usually, charges happen though undercover officers and confidential informants.
What Counts as Distribution of a Drug
It should be noted that distribution does not mean a sale must be made. An example of this distinction could be a husband buying drugs and bringing it home to use with his wife. Under Texas law, this could be possession with the intent to distribute because while there was no monetary value, the husband did give the drug to the wife, another individual, in Lubbock.
The manner in which a person was charged may have an impact on their case. A Plainview drug possession with the intent to distribute lawyer could examine the evidence presented against a person and determine the best course for a defense.
Consequences an Intent to Distribute Charge May Have
An intent to distribute charge may usually increase the punishment range. A possession with the intent to deliver case could move the charge up from a third degree to a second-degree or from a second-degree to a first-degree. An individual caught with drugs might initially be facing a third-degree basic possession charge. Under the enhanced provision of with an intent to distribute, the charge may go up to a second degree.
Contact a Plainview drug possession with the intent to distribute lawyer to fight on your behalf.