Criminal Attorneys & DWI Lawyers in Covington, New Orleans, and Shreveport Louisiana
If you have been arrested for a drug charge in Covington, Slidell, or elsewhere in St. Tammany Parish, you should know that the prosecutors and judges are very strict and conservative. But every drug charge is different. There is a great difference between simple possession of 2 grams of cocaine versus possession with intent to distribute 10 pounds or fentanyl. Nevertheless, our drug charge lawyers in Covington know how to help. Mr. Barkemeyer wrote the book on How to Defend Drug Charges in Louisiana which has been published on Amazon. He knows defenses that work and defenses that can help get reduced charges and reduced sentences.
Drug charge defense can either be about mitigation through substance abuse treatment or it can be about finding illegal search and seizure issues. This does NOT mean that the police officer was mean to you or put the cuffs on too tight. Illegal stops and searches have to do with examining the facts as compared to established constitutional case law. Only an experienced drug defense lawyer in Louisiana should be trusted to handle this. This is what we do every day.
Backed by many years of experience dealing with the many drug crimes in Louisiana, our criminal law firm boasts a CV which provides a combination of over 100 years of experience. When it comes to drug-related offenses, we are aware of how serious these cases are and we find ways to make sure that we get the best results for our clients.
Our drug lawyers always ensure that our clients understand that they know the laws and regulations which are guiding that particular offense. We let you know the rights which are available to you and would help you to utilize it when the time comes. If there is anything you can be sure of during this period, you will have our full support.
Drug Charges in Covington, Louisiana
In Covington, Louisiana, drug possession is a serious offense that can lead to significant legal consequences. Whether you were arrested in Covington, Slidell, Mandeville, or elsewhere in St. Tammany Parish it is crucial to understand the laws surrounding drug possession and the potential penalties you may face. This page aims to provide essential information about drug possession and the role of a criminal defense attorney in defending your rights.
Understanding Drug Possession in Louisiana
Under Louisiana Revised Statute 40:966, it is illegal for anyone to possess a controlled substance or drug without a valid prescription authorized by the law. Controlled substances encompass various drugs, including cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, steroids, marijuana, and more. These substances are classified as controlled due to their high potential for abuse, addiction, and potential harm to users.
The Stringency of St. Tammany Parish Drug Laws
St. Tammany Parish judges take drug possession cases seriously, and the legal penalties can be severe. In just a matter of hours, a drug possession case can transition from a casual encounter to incarceration. Moreover, the consequences of having a criminal record can significantly impact your future.
Recognizing the significance of legal representation, it is essential for anyone facing drug possession charges in Covington, Slidell, and Mandeville, or any part of St. Tammany Parish to seek the assistance of experienced drug possession lawyers, such as those at the Barkemeyer Law Firm.
Laws Governing Drug Possession
In the cities of Covington, Slidell, and Mandeville, state laws dictate that individuals caught with illegal substances may be charged with either a misdemeanor or felony offense. Multiple convictions can lead to a permanent mark on your criminal record. However, there are specific criteria, known as the “Burden of Proof,” that must be met to convict someone of drug possession in St. Tammany Parish:
Prosecutors must provide evidence that the defendant was in possession of drugs or controlled substances that are deemed illegal under the law. A conviction can only occur if the drug is found on or in the control of the defendant is prohibited.
Knowledge of the Drugs
The prosecutor must demonstrate that the defendant was aware of the drug or controlled substance found in their possession. This element is crucial to prevent innocent individuals from facing punishment.
Control of the Drugs
The prosecutor must prove that the defendant had control over the substance, meaning the drug was found in proximity to the defendant, such as in their pocket or wallet.
Classifications for Drug Possession
Penalties for drug possession vary depending on the drug schedules outlined in the law. In St. Tammany Parish, drug schedules follow federal classifications, with drugs categorized from most dangerous to least dangerous:
Schedule I Controlled Substances
These drugs have no accepted medical use, a high potential for abuse, and include substances like cannabis, ecstasy, strong opiates, LSD, and more.
Schedule II Controlled Substances
These drugs have some accepted medical use but a high potential for abuse, including cocaine, PCP, methamphetamine, and opioids like oxycodone.
Schedule III Controlled Substances
These drugs have less potential for abuse and some medical use, such as anabolic steroids, ketamine, and depressants.
Schedule IV Controlled Substances
These drugs have low potential for abuse and include medications like alprazolam and diazepam.
Schedule V Controlled Substances
These drugs have even lower potential for abuse and are primarily used for medical purposes, including some barbiturates and medications like pentazocine.
Penalties for Drug Possession
Penalties for drug possession crimes are specific to drug schedules and can include imprisonment, fines, or both. For example:
Possession of Schedule I
Possession of schedule 1 drugs (excluding marijuana) can lead to 1 to 10 years in prison, fines up to $5,000, or both. Penalties increase with subsequent violations.
Possession of Schedule II
Possession of schedule 2 drugs may result in 1 to 5 years imprisonment, fines up to $5,000, or both. Possession of PCP can lead to up to 20 years in prison.
Possession of Schedule III
Possession of schedule 3 drugs can result in 1 to 5 years imprisonment, fines up to $5,000, or both.
Possession of Schedule IV
Possession of schedule 4 drugs can lead to 1 to 5 years imprisonment, a $5,000 fine, or both. Possession of certain Schedule IV drugs can result in up to 10 years in prison.
Possession of Schedule V
Possession of schedule 5 drugs can result in 1 to 5 years imprisonment, a $5,000 fine, or both.
Multiple Drug Possession Charges
If you face subsequent drug possession charges or have been charged multiple times, the penalties become even more severe. Upon a second or subsequent offense, the defendant may face double the applicable prison term and fine.
Drug Possession in Drug-Free Zones
Certain areas, including schools, public parks, universities, daycares, colleges, recreational facilities, and public playgrounds, are designated as drug-free zones. Possessing drugs in these areas is considered an aggravating factor that can increase the maximum penalties by one and a half times.
Seeking Legal Representation for a Drug Possession Charge
Regardless of the quantity of drugs involved, it is essential to take drug possession charges seriously. St. Tammany Parish is known for its stringent drug possession laws, making legal representation crucial. When facing drug possession charges in this area, you should hire a lawyer to represent your interests and navigate the legal complexities on your behalf.
Consult with a Drug Possession Lawyer
You deserve competent legal representation, especially when facing drug possession charges. At the Barkemeyer Law Firm, our criminal defense attorneys have the experience and expertise to advocate for your rights. Contact us to receive the legal representation you need and deserve.
Facing drug possession charges in Covington, Slidell, and Mandeville, or any part of St. Tammany Parish is a serious matter. Understanding the law and seeking experienced legal representation are crucial steps to protect your rights and achieve the best possible outcome for your case. Don’t underestimate the importance of legal counsel when dealing with drug possession charges in this jurisdiction.
Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney For Drug Possession in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana
It is important to keep in your mind that getting a criminal charge on drug-related offenses can have very serious consequences. The truth is that you must take the necessary steps to make sure that you do not face those consequences. Getting a criminal defense attorney is the very first step you have to take.
Here at the Barkemeyer Law Firm, our criminal defense attorneys make sure that every case that is brought to us is treated seriously and equal. We realize just how important your case is and we do not treat each case the same.
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Louisiana DWI & Criminal Lawyers
Louisiana criminal lawyers and DWI attorneys at the Barkemeyer Law Firm providing legal defense services for clients in Baton Rouge, Ascension, Livingston, Tangipahoa, Port Allen, Alexandria, New Orleans, Lafayette, Metairie, Kenner, Gretna, Hahnville, Chalmette, Slidell, St. Tammany, St. Charles, St. John, St. Bernard, Mandeville, Covington, Shreveport, Bossier, Jefferson, and all of Louisiana.
DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is not formal legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship.