Harrison & Smyth, P.A.

What Are The Common Types Of Drug Cases That You Handle?

The most common drug cases in our area are possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of Marijuana or meth, possession with intent to deliver or delivery of marijuana, meth, heroin, cocaine, prescription drugs, or other controlled substances. The type of substance and the amounts will determine whether the charge is a misdemeanor or a felony. We handle juvenile, misdemeanors, and felonies cases.

What Determines Whether A Drug Charge Is Categorized As A Misdemeanor Or A Felony In Idaho?

It is determined by what schedule of drug the person is found with and/or the amount of the drugs. For example, if someone is found with marijuana, it needs to be over 3 ounces to be a felony. Everything else under that is a misdemeanor. However, for meth any amount, even residue because of the schedule of drug it is; is considered a felony.

What Are The Schedules Of Drugs In Idaho?

In Idaho the drugs are divided into six schedules. Schedule 1 drugs such as opiates or opium derivatives and hallucinogenic substances have a high potential for abuse and usually there is no accepted medical use. They are unsafe in treatment. Schedule 2 drugs such as Coca leaves and opium have a high potential for abuse, have an accepted medical use and can result in severe psychological and physical dependencies if abused. Schedule 3 drugs such as Codeine or other steroids have some level of abuse less than Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 and have an accepted medical use and can lead to low or moderate physical dependency or high psychological dependence.

Schedule 4 drugs have a lower potential for abuse than Schedule 3 drugs, have an accepted medical use and may lead to limited physical or psychological dependence in relation to Schedule 3 drugs. Schedule 5 drugs are the least dangerous with the lowest potential for abuse, have a currently accepted medical use and likely to lead to limited physical or psychological dependency. Schedule 6 drugs include volatile nitrates commonly known as poppers.

What Are Possession, Sale And Intent To Distribute Charges In Idaho?

Possession occurs when you have actual or constructive possession. Actual possession is when it is on your person, such as in your pants, your shirt, your shoes, your wallet or a bag you are holding. Constructive possession is when it is determined the drugs are yours because of where they are found, your proximity to where they are found and who has access to the area where the drugs were found. For example, if the drugs are found in your bedroom at a time you were not there, then there is a high likelihood you will be charged with constructive possession since it was in your room and usually no one else goes into your room.

A sale occurs when there is an exchange of drugs for some type of payment. A sale is very similar to distribution of drugs. Distribution is when you transfer controlled substances to another person. Distribution can be actual where you physically transfer it to another person or it may be constructive such as when you have intent to distribute. This can be found if there is evidence of large quantities of drugs packaged in small bundles. The State may infer you have those drugs in your possession to sell rather than just for your personal use. The State may increase the charge to intent to distribute.

There is also an attempt; if you attempt to transfer controlled substances but you are prevented from doing so you can be charged. Distribution and intent to distribute carry higher penalties than just possession.

Can Police Conduct A Warrant less Search Of a Property Or A Vehicle If They Suspect Drugs?

There are times when police can search without a warrant, and most searches do occur without a warrant, but the police cannot just barge into your home and search because you have a reasonable expectation of privacy in your home. They can come in if there is probable cause and there is a search warrant. Some exceptions to that occur if you give consent. You can freely give law enforcement the authority to search your home or your car and they do not have to inform you that you can refuse to give your consent. If you give consent they can search your vehicle or home.

The other way they can search without a warrant is the plain view doctrine. If they are lawfully in an area and see an illegal substance in plain view they can search that area without a warrant. If you have been arrested they have a right to search the area where you are arrested to see if there are other illegal substances there. This called a search incident to arrest. Exigent circumstances is another exception. If law enforcement believes that to get a warrant would jeopardize public safety or it would lead to a loss of evidence they can perform a search without a warrant. For example, the police can forcibly enter your home if it is probable that evidence is being destroyed, if a suspect is trying to escape, or if someone is being injured.

Drug Crimes Attorney Serving Idaho Falls, Bonneville County, ID & Surrounding Areas

For more information on Drug Cases In Idaho, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (208) 552-1165 today.


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