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Case Conclusion Date: 03.13.2017
Practice Area: Criminal defense
Description: Client charged with Unlawful Use of Drug Paraphernalia under RCW 69.50.412. She was known to associate with people who abused heroin. Police found hypodermic needles in her purse that she left in the woods after hanging out with her drug-abusing friends. Client was charged thereafter. This crime is a gross misdemeanor punishable up to 1 year jail and a $5,000 fine. Despite the allegations, Mr. Ransom filed a Knapstad motion to dismiss because possession of drug paraphernalia by itself is not a crime; the crime requires an improper use. Also, the statute provides that it is lawful for persons over age 18 to possess sterile hypodermic syringes and needles for the purpose of reducing blood borne diseases. RCW 69.50.412(5). Here, Client was merely delivering clean syringes to people who abused heroin. Her intentions were altruistic, and done with the intention of preventing the spread of disease among intravenous drug users. Prosecutor dismissed the case. Client was extremely happy.