Camden NJ Heroin Possession Attorney
There has been a growing trend over the past several years of heroin use moving out of urban areas and into the suburban middle class. Towns like Cherry Hill, Pennsauken, and Voorhees in Camden County are experiencing major heroin issues just like the City of Camden. Understandably, the state has ramped up efforts to curb this epidemic through increased enforcement, new drug rehabilitation programs, and education. Despite all of these efforts, the number of chronic users continues to grow along with the log of criminal cases involving heroin possession at the Camden County Superior Court and elsewhere. If you or a loved one is battling a possession of heroin case and/or addiction, call the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall for help. Our staff includes 8 criminal attorneys who have been fighting possession charges for decades. Several of our lawyers are even former prosecutors who have witnessed the workings of the courts from the other side. To speak to an attorney immediately, call our firm for a free consultation anytime 24/7.
Charged With Possession of Heroin in Cherry Hill NJ
You may be convicted of heroin possession in Cherry Hill or anywhere else in Camden County if you knowingly or purposely possess any amount of this controlled dangerous substance (“CDS”). N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10 makes it illegal and a felony offense to possess any quantity of heroin. You should also know that you may be charged with this violation in a town like Voorhees, for example, even if the heroin was not found on your person as N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10 extends to situations of constructive possession too. As a result, you can be charged with possession of heroin if you actually, constructively, or jointly possess any amount of heroin. Possession of heroin is a third-degree crime that results in penalties that include between three (3) and five (5) years in prison, up to a $35,000 fine, probation, and/or drug court. You are also subject to a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license for six months.
Understanding What Constitutes Possession Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10
Actual possession occurs when a person physically controls, holds, or houses the illicit materials. This does not require the court to consider the surrounding circumstances. Maintaining physical control of the substance will suffice for a possession charge. Unfortunately, the old excuse that you were just holding it for a friend is no defense in a court of law.
Constructive possession is determined by the court based upon the person’s conduct in relation to the CDS. A person constructively possesses a drug when they are able to exercise current and almost immediate control by direct or indirect means in a manner that would affect the item during the time in question. Simple presence where the drugs, contraband, or illicit materials are found is not sufficient to establish constructive possession. Drugs found in an automobile often result in a constructive possession situation. If the drugs are in plain view in the vehicle and an individual is aware of their presence, constructive possession is likely established. However, the drugs do not need to be in plain view for constructive possession to apply. Furthermore, police and courts are permitted to infer a person’s knowledge of the drug’s presence from the circumstances surrounding the situation.
Courts will determine whether joint possession (possession by another individual when they will be shared with another) exists based upon the circumstances surrounding the situation. Factors that the court will consider include: the relationship of the individuals, whether they maintain a commercial or personal relationship, statements made by the persons involved, conduct of the persons involved, whether the parties traveled together, whether they pooled money or resources, the number of drugs or illicit substances involved, and whether one party had sole possession of the drugs. Based upon these considerations, courts can find that a person is guilty of possession of a CDS without ever having actual or physical control over the drugs.
Possession of Heroin Defense Lawyers in Pennsauken
Possession of any amount of heroin is, as previously stated, a third-degree crime. Third-degree crimes are indictable offenses and qualify as a felony in New Jersey. Persons convicted of a third-degree heroin possession face a maximum prison term of 5 years. The fine can also reach $35,000. There are, however, way around penalties like these including Pretrial Intervention (“PTI”) and Drug Court. There is also always the chance that our lawyers can successfully challenge the stop, search or another aspect of your case. There certainly is considerable that can be accomplished by a knowledge defense lawyer like those at our firm. Do not hesitate to contact us for a free consultation if you were arrested for possession of heroin in Pine Hill, Bellmawr, Collingswood, Haddonfield or any other municipality in Camden County. An attorney is available immediately to assist you.