According to the National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics, police arrest more than one million people each year for drug-related offenses.
Drug offenses are serious legal matters that can have significant consequences for individuals involved. Understanding the various types of drug charges is important in navigating the legal landscape and making informed decisions.
1. Possession of controlled substances
One of the most common drug charges is possession of controlled substances. This occurs when an individual possesses illegal drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine or heroin. The severity of the charge often depends on the type and quantity of the substance in question.
2. Distribution or trafficking
Drug distribution or trafficking involves the sale, transport, or movement of illegal substances. This charge is more serious than simple possession and can result in severe penalties. The amount of the drug, the involvement of minors and the location of the offense can impact the severity of the charges.
3. Manufacturing drugs
Manufacturing drugs involves the production or cultivation of illegal substances. This charge can apply to individuals involved in the creation of drugs like methamphetamine or the cultivation of marijuana plants. Manufacturing charges are typically more severe than possession charges.
4. Drug paraphernalia possession
In addition to charges related to the drugs themselves, individuals can face charges for possessing drug paraphernalia. This includes items used in the consumption or production of drugs, such as pipes, syringes or scales.
5. Driving under the influence
Drug-related charges are not limited to possession or distribution. Driving under the influence of drugs, known as a DUI, is another serious offense. Law enforcement uses various methods, including blood tests and field sobriety tests, to determine if drugs are impairing a driver.
6. Prescription drug violations
Misuse or illegal possession of prescription drugs can also lead to criminal charges. This includes obtaining prescription medications without a valid prescription or selling prescription drugs to others.
7. Juvenile drug offenses
Minors can face drug charges as well, and the legal consequences may differ from those for adults. Juvenile drug offenses can include possession, distribution or other related charges.
Being aware of the different types of drug charges is important. It helps people understand how their charges may impact the future.