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What is the penalty for juvenile with possession of marijuana and paraphernalia in Maryland?

Rockville, MD |

1st offense. Cop said its a misdemeanor.Juvenile.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. The case will be referred to the Department of Juvenile Services (DJS). DJS will send a letter to your parents (or legal guardian) to bring you to an intake meeting, which involves meeting with a DJS case worker. At that meeting, the matter will be discussed, including your right to a trial (a trial is called an adjudicatory hearing in Juvenile court). You will also likely be offered the option of an "informal adjustment" of your case, such as a drug counseling, community service, weekly urine tests, etc., in exchange for the case not proceeding further to prosecution. If you agree to the informal adjustment, then the plan is submitted to the prosecutor for approval, and if the prosecutor goes along (they usually do), then that's it: you follow the plan and the case will get closed after you complete the program. If either you or the prosecutor reject the informal adjustment route, then you go the the adjudicatory hearing. You should consult with and have a lawyer even for the intake hearing, because a lawyer can help guide the process ad also determine whether you have a valid legal defense to the charges (such as an illegal search or arrest). If the case proceeds to an adjudicatory hearing, you must have legal representation, and your parents or legal guardian will be ordered to pay for a private attorney, or they must qualify for the Public Defender. If you are found guilty ("guilty of a crime" in Juvenile court is phrased "involved in a delinquent act"), then the judge will schedule a further hearing for "disposition." (that means, sentencing.) You are likely to have a very similar sentence as what was recommended in the informal adjustment, but you will be further on a period of supervision by DJS, with weekly contacts from the DJS case worker, and a periodic "review" hearing to determine whether to release you from further supervision and close the case, or to continue supervision to ensure continued compliance with the conditions set for you (or to add new ones if you violate the conditions). A Juvenile court retains jurisdiction over you on the charged offense until your case is closed, or until you turn 21 years of age. That is why accepting the informal disposition is usually accepted, because you never have to be placed under formal court supervision. You should consult with an attorney to review your case and to guide you through this process.


  2. Get a good juvenile lawyer. You case should be eligible for informal and services.. As to a max, you could be potentially be under juv. jurisdiction until you are 21, So get a good lawyer and get in services/program, early and often. Best, -AP