The most common type of drug crimes in Ocean City are for possession of marijuana, followed by other drugs like prescription pills, cocaine, heroin, mdma and others. The legislature in Maryland has relaxed drug possession laws involving marijuana in amounts less than 10 grams. This offense is a civil, payable citation for those 21 and over. For those under 21, it requires a mandatory court appearance and you should be represented by an attorney. Possession of other drugs is charged as Possession of NOT MARIJUANA and then the drug is listed. This offense is taken very seriously by the judges in the Ocean City area and can result in lengthy probation, high fines and possible jail if not defended successfully. The main defense in these cases can include chain of custody issues, violation of your constitutional rights and issues related to an unlawful search or seizure. In simpler terms, the defining issue is usually how the police came to obtain the drugs. Whether you were stopped on the boardwalk and questioned or pulled over for speeding. A full analysis of how the drugs were seized and whether you were in actual or constructive possession of any drugs at all is necessary. Attorney Clark has successfully defended hundreds of these cases in the Ocean City area.
Possession with intent to deliver or PWID is another common drug crime in the Ocean City area. These cases can carry significant potential jail and probation if convicted. Typically, a search of the vehicle or person results in a larger than normal amount of drugs. This is true for all types of drugs, including marijuana, pills, and heroin. Often the state of Maryland has a very limited view of what constitutes personal use, and if in doubt they will often charge the higher offense of PWID.
Constructive Possession of Drugs
In Ocean City, the drugs cases involving possession involve either actual or constructive possession. In almost every drug possession case, the first question that needs to be analyzed is where the drugs were found. Most of us understand actual possession is when the drugs are on the person, like in a pocket or shoe. The less known type of possession is constructive possession.
Constructive possession is when an item, usually drugs or a weapon, is at that person’s disposal but it is not on his or her person. The duration of the possession and the amount possessed are not neeeded to prove constructive possession, and it is not necessary to prove actual ownership of the evidence at issue.
The constructive possession laws basically require that the cops and then the judge or jury look into all the circumstances before determining whether there is possession. Many constructive possession drug cases involve more than one possible defendant who are pulled over in a car. In many cases the distance between the defendant drugs in the car is the most important factor to look at. Other factors include whether the drugs were within the view of the defendant, whether the drugs were hidden, and whether the defendant had ownership or a possessory right to the place where the drugs were found. If drugs were found in a person’s home or apartment it may be inferred that he or she knew about their presence and had control over them.
Contact Attorney Brian H. Clark for a complimentary strategy session to go over your case.
Ocean City Drug Distribution Lawyer
Every summer in Ocean City the police conduct investigations into drug distribution and aggressively arrest locals and visitors. Maryland has harsh sentencing laws for the crimes of drug sale, drug manufacturing, and possession of a controlled substance with the intent to distribute. A common client of ours will be a younger defendant who was solicited by the police to sell them a small amount of marijuana, cocaine or pills. This offense is a felony and will forever change the course of someone’s life if not handled correctly. In recent years the drug transactions have been videotaped by a hidden camera. The Ocean City police department is well known in the area for the aggressive and diligent deployment of its undercover narcotics officers, particularly in June with the influx of younger visitors from high school graduation.
State law mandates maximum penalties for sale, distribution, or manufacture of all the illegal controlled substances. The maximum penalty for crimes involving the sale or distribution of a narcotic drug is 20 years in prison and a fine of $25,000. Second and third time offenders face increased maximum penalties and fines up to $100,000. A first time conviction for sale, distribution, or manufacture of a hallucinogen such as ecstasy may result in a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a $20,000 fines.
Contact Attorney Brian H. Clark for a complimentary strategy session about your case in the Ocean City area.