While marijuana possession (for medicinal purposes and otherwise) is a growing national debate, it still remains illegal. The penalties, however, in each state differ. Those direct and indirect for drug possession in Utah, for instance, are harsh and unforgiving.
In Utah, one ounce of marijuana is a misdemeanor that calls for up to six months in jail and a $1000 fine; possessing between one and 100 pounds of marijuana is a felony punishable by five years in prison and a $5000 fine.
However, along with criminal penalties, those convicted of marijuana possession in Utah will have their driver’s license suspended for six months. Also, an increasing number of people are having their driving privileges interrupted even after being charged with marijuana possession. While it is unlawful for the DMV to suspend a driver’s license without a conviction, a court order is often needed to lift the suspension.
In an ever increasing reliance on vehicles to get to school, work or other important events and meetings, seeking the help of an experienced Salt Lake City criminal defense attorney is advised.
Why You Need an Attorney
Specifically, an attorney can help individuals understand the legal ramifications of a marijuana conviction, as they pertain to that person’s specific situation or instance. Individuals are also afforded particular civil rights that must be followed by a police officer and prosecuting attorney. If any are violated, an outright dismissal of a person’s drug possession charges could result.
Additionally, a lawyer can access the likelihood the state will be able to get a conviction. In order to be convicted of a crime in Utah, the state must prove every element of a particular crime beyond a reasonable doubt. This is very important when facing charges that include possession with intent to distribute, when the facts actually suggest that simple possession is the actual crime, or that no crime occurred at all.
A lawyer can also advise individuals of options available that may help individuals keep their license.