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Criminal Process

 

New Hampshire Drug Offenses

 

Marijuana Possession

Marijuana possession offenses in New Hampshire are very common. However, that doesn’t mean they are easy to deal with or result only in a slap on the wrist. New Hampshire marijuana laws are serious and require that you have someone to help make sense of them. Call today to discuss your marijuana case with an experienced attorney at the law office of Shepherd and Osborne...

 

A Marijuana charge and sentence largely depends on how much marijuana you had on you at the time of arrest. If an officer (and later prosecutor) thinks you have enough that you may have been planning to sell it, you will face harsher penalties. However, if it appears that you just had enough for personal use, you may only be facing a possession charge.

 

Cocaine Possession

Cocaine Possession occurs either directly, (in a suspects pocket or somewhere on their person) or indirectly if found in an area of their control, (in the glove compartment or trunk of a car, in a persons purse or briefcase, in the pocket of a jacket hanging in a closet).

 

A person charged with unlawful possession may be convicted with drug charges if he or she is either in actual or constructive possession of the drug. A person who knowingly has physical control over a drug is in actual possession. A person who has the power and intention to exercise dominion and control over a drug is in constructive possession of the drug.

 

Possession with intent to sell is commonly proved by either the way the narcotic is packaged, or the quantity. A person may possess a relatively small amount of drugs (one or two grams) but it may be packaged in small, tenth gram bindles. This would give rise to the inference the drug was going to be sold. Or a suspect may be caught with a large amount of narcotics, leading the police to believe it was destined to be sold to others.

 

LSD Possession

New Hampshire state drug possession laws make it a crime to willfully possess illegal controlled substances such as LSD, the (club drug), unless prescribed by a physician. These laws also criminalize the possession of "precursor" chemicals used in drug manufacturing and or cultivating, as well as certain accessories related to drug use. Drug possession laws vary according to drug type, amount, and geographic area of the offense. LSD possession can result in a lengthy prison term and a substantial fine.

 

We can help you in any part of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Possession of small quantities may be characterized as "simple" possession, while possession of large amounts may result in a charge of presumed "possession with intent to distribute."

 

Heroin Possession

Heroin Possession occurs either directly, (in a suspects pocket or somewhere on their person) or indirectly if found in an area of their control, (in the glove compartment or trunk of a car, in a persons purse or briefcase, in the pocket of a jacket hanging in a closet).

 

A person charged with unlawful possession may be convicted with drug charges if he or she is either in actual or constructive possession of the drug. A person who knowingly has physical control over a drug is in actual possession. A person who has the power and intention to exercise dominion and control over a drug is in constructive possession of the drug.

 

Possession with intent to sell is commonly proved by either the way the narcotic is packaged, or the quantity. A person may possess a relatively small amount of drugs (one or two grams) but it may be packaged in small, tenth gram bindles. This would give rise to the inference the drug was going to be sold. Or a suspect may be caught with a large amount of narcotics, leading the police to believe it was destined to be sold to others.

 

Methamphetamines Possession

Possession for sale is a felony punishable by detention in state prison for either 16 months, 2 years, or 3 years. The elements of possession for sale are (1) possession of the dangerous drug, (2) for the purpose of selling it.). Although in some situations, the circumstances make a sellers purpose obvious, the vagueness of the law can invite prosecutorial overreaching.

 

At trial, police officers may testify as to factors that point to an intent to sell. These factors include the quantity, packaging, and normal use of an individual. However, an officer may not opine about intent without any evidence supporting the opinion.

 

Simple possession carries the least severe penalties. Although it is punishable as a felony, the maximum punishment, absent aggravating factors, is imprisonment in a county jail for . . . not more than one year or in the state prison.

 

Either way, having an attorney on your side will significantly increase your chances of a lesser charge or even dropped charges. We are anxious to hear your side of the story. Call us today!

 

Manufacture, Delivering or Possessing with Intent to Deliver Marijuana

Possession of any amount of marijuana is a misdemeanor and is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine up to $2,000.

 

Manufacture or distribution of less than one ounce of marijuana is punishable by up to three years in prison and a fine up to $25,000. For one ounce or more the penalty increases to a possible seven years in prison and fine up to $100,000. Manufacture or distribution of five pounds or more is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $300,000.

 

Penalties for sale or distribution within 1,000 feet of a school are up to two times the possible prison term and fine.

 

Upon conviction of a person aged 15 - 18 years for possession with intent to sell, an additional penalty of 1 - 5 year driver's license suspension may be imposed. For persons aged 15 - 18 years convicted of possession or use, the offender's driver's license is suspended for 90 days - one year. For persons over the age of eighteen convicted of possession with intent to sell, the driver's license suspension may be for as long as life.

 

Sale or manufacture of paraphernalia is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine up to $2,000.

 

Marijuana use is the least serious marijuana related charge in New Hampshire, but it is still a misdemeanor offense. If there is evidence that you smoked, used, or consumed pot/marijuana/weed, you can be charged with marijuana use.

 

In New Hampshire, a person is guilty of DUI if he or she drives or attempts to drive a vehicle upon any way while he or she is under the influence of any controlled drug. N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 265-A:2(2010).

 

Implied Consent

  • Any person who drives in New Hampshire shall be deemed to have given consent to physical tests and examinations for the purpose of determining whether such person is under the influence of intoxicating liquor and/or controlled drugs. Id. § 265-A:4.
  • If a person under arrest refuses to submit to physical test none shall be given, but the refusal carries the following penalties - an offender with no prior DUI or refusal DUIs will have his or her license to drive or nonresident driving privileges suspended for a period of 180 days. Id. 265-A:14. An offender with prior DUI or a prior refusal of consent will have his or her license suspended for two years. Id. § 265-A:14.

 

Penalties

  • First offense class B misdemeanor – fine of not less than 500; The person's driver's license or privilege to drive shall be revoked for not less than 9 months and, at the discretion of the court, such revocation may be extended for a period not to exceed 2 years; offender is required to complete an impaired driver intervention program prior to the restoration of the offender's driver's license. Id. § 265-A:18(I)(a).
  • Second offense (w/i 2 years) class A misdemeanor – fine of not less than $750; mandatory sentence of not less than 37 consecutive days of which 30 consecutive 24-hour periods shall be served in the county correctional facility followed by 7 consecutive days to be served at the state-operated 7-day multiple DWI offender intervention detention center; privilege to drive revoked for not less than 3 years. Id. § 265-A:18(IV)(a).
  • Second offense (w/i 10 years) class A misdemeanor - mandatory sentence of not less than 10 consecutive days of which 3 consecutive 24-hour periods shall be served in the county correctional facility and 7 consecutive days shall be served at the state-operated 7-day multiple DWI offender intervention detention; privilege to drive revoked for not less than 3 years. Id. § 265-A:18(IV)(a).
  • Third offense class A misdemeanor - any person convicted under this paragraph shall be subject to all the penalties associated with a second DUI, except that the person's driver's license or privilege to drive shall be revoked indefinitely and shall not be restored for at least 5 years; the person shall be sentenced to a mandatory sentence of not less than 180 consecutive days of which 30 consecutive 24-hour periods shall be served in the county correctional facility following which the person shall complete at the person's own expense a residential treatment program of at least 28 days duration or an intensive course of substance abuse treatment. Id. § 265-A:18(IV)(b).
  • Fourth and subsequent offense felony - any person convicted under this paragraph shall be subject to all the penalties of associated with a second and third DUI, except that the person shall be guilty of a felony, and the person's driver's license or privilege to drive shall be revoked indefinitely and the person shall not petition for eligibility to reapply for a driver's license as provided in subparagraph (b)(1) for at least 7 years. Id. § 265-A:18(IV)(c).

 

Sobriety Checkpoints

In New Hampshire, sobriety checkpoints are judicially approved and authorized by statute.

 

Checkpoints not permitted in New Hampshire unless authorized by a judge. To justify stops without specific suspicion, officers must show the same end can not be achieved by less intrusive means. State v. Koppel, 499 A2d. 977 (1985).

 

What does it mean if I’ve been conditionally discharged?

New Hampshire offers conditional discharge for first time offenders. This simply means that you will be released to probation without a trial. If you successfully complete the probation the charges will be dropped. If you violate the probationary terms, however, you will be brought back to court and face the original potential sentence.

 

If the circumstances of your crime warrant a charge of manufacturing, delivering or intent to deliver marijuana you are facing much harsher penalties than a simple possession charge. You can be charged with intent to distribute for almost any amount of marijuana. However, if you are caught with larger quantities, the potential penalties and sentences are much higher.

 

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Attorneys represent clients throughout New Hampshire including Manchester, Nashua, Concord, Bedford, Merrimack, Belknap County, Carroll County, Cheshire County, Coos County, Grafton County, Hillsborough County, Merrimack County, Rockingham County, Strafford County and Sullivan County.