Nevada Criminal Defense Lawyers

Drug Possession


There’s nothing minor about being caught in possession of drugs. Especially if this is your first offense, you are probably frightened about how your case will turn out. And if this isn’t your first time in front of a judge, you know the courts won’t be pleased to see you again.

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When you are facing charges of possession of a controlled substance, an aggressive attorney can be a major asset. From helping you evaluate potential plea agreements to challenging the evidence in court, the right defense lawyer is invaluable.

From the moment you first come in contact with police, they have to be on the ball. If the reason for your stop or search is questionable, I will challenge the admissibility of the evidence against you. Your rights are my foremost concern.

Drug Classifications

Controlled substances are classified by “schedule” according to their risk for addiction and level of danger.

Schedule I drugs include those that are the most dangerous and have a high risk of addiction or dependency and no legitimate medical use. Drugs included under this heading include LSD, Ecstasy (MDMA, X, Molly), heroin and mescaline.

Schedule II substances still have a high risk of abuse but may have legitimate medical uses. These include things like opium, cocaine, methadone, methamphetamines, and amphetamines.

Schedule III drugs are slightly less dangerous than Schedule II substances, but still have a moderate risk of abuse. Schedule III substances include anabolic steroids, testosterone, ketamine(special k), and some depressants.

Schedule IV drugs have a slight risk of dependency and have very acceptable medical uses. Some Schedule IV drugs are clonazepam, tranquilizers, and sedatives.

Schedule V substances have a very low risk of dependency and include things like Tylenol with Codeine.

Nevada Drug Possession Laws & Penalties

As stated, the penalty and charges you face depend on the type of drug you are charged with possessing and the extent of your criminal record.

First and Second Offense:

If it is your first or second drug charge and you are caught with any substance classified as a schedule I, II, III, or IV, you will face Class E felony charges. A class E felony charge carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 1 year and up to 4 years in prison.

Third Offense:

If this marks the third or greater drug offense for you, and you are charged with possessing any drug listed in Schedule I, II, III, or IV, you will face Class D felony charges. A Class D felony carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 1 year and up to four with a fine reaching $20,000.

Ref: NRS §453.336

Will I Do Jail Time For a Drug Charge?

Though drug possession laws in Nevada are very harsh, that doesn’t mean you will absolutely be sentenced to jail time.

For one, there are often opportunities to beat the charges, with a motion to suppress, or other strategies.  Many police searches are not consented to, and illegal.

There are many exceptions and enhancements with possession charges. Things like where you are caught with the drug can dramatically impact your sentence.

If you are fortunate enough to serve probation in lieu of prison time, you will likely be required to attend drug treatment and perform community service hours.

Being charged with possession of a controlled substance in Nevada is a serious matter. Our state is well known across the country as having some of the toughest drug laws on the books. If you are facing charges like these, call me today for a consultation.

Together we can discuss the fact of the case and the options available to you.