I have been pulled over and charged with possession of marijuana and paraphernalia, this is my first offense what can I do?

I'm sure you guys get this all the time, I need some advice because I really just want to leave this behind me. I don't think I'm going to get jail time, but I need to know what I should do at this point going forward to make this as easy as possible. Assume I know nothing about the law, I really don't because I've never had this happen to me before. I'm not sure what to expect, please help me.

Norristown, PA -

Attorney Answers (3)

Christopher M. Patterson

Christopher M. Patterson

Criminal Defense Attorney - Lancaster, PA
Answered

Speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately. Although these charges are relatively minor, they can have a major impact on your life. A conviction for possession of marijuana carries a mandatory 6 month loss of driving privilege in addition to any fine and probation. Conviction of either offense means you will have a criminal record that can come back to embarrass you later in life.
Some counties offer diversion programs for these offenses that allow you to earn a withdrawl or dismissal of the charges; however, you may also have a valid defense. An attorney can discuss the case with you and tell you what is your best way to go. Good luck.

Robert C. Keller

Robert C. Keller

Criminal Defense Attorney - Havertown, PA
Answered

You should retain a criminal defense attorney. You may be eligible for a first time offenders program known as ARD. Under the program you do not plead guilty to anything. You are placed on probation without verdict. As long as you stay out of trouble and complete the terms, the case will be dismissed and you will be able to have the case expunged.

Daniel M. Myshin

Daniel M. Myshin

Criminal Defense Attorney - Harrisburg, PA
Answered

My colleagues, Mr. Keller and Mr. Patterson, have it right. Discuss your case privately with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Many on this site will provide a brief initial consultation without charge. If you cannot afford counsel, apply to the public defender's office. While you will likely not have to serve time in jail, do not attempt to handle this alone as the charges are serious. Good luck!

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