Possession of prescription drugs is a commonly occurring offense in Ohio. Many individuals throughout Ohio and across the country are frequent users of prescription medications, as they can be conveniently picked up from the local pharmacy and provide effective relief from pain and suffering. Prescription drug abuse has become prevalent due to in part to the efficacy of the drugs and in part because of their convenience.
Possession of prescription drugs falls under the Ohio Revised Code statute of possession of controlled substances ( ORC 2925.11 ) which prohibits anyone from knowingly obtaining, possessing or using a controlled substance (prescription drugs in this case), unless any of the following applies:
- A manufacturer, licensed health professional authorized to prescribe drugs, pharmacist, or pharmacy owner;
- An individual who obtains the controlled substance as the result of a lawful prescription issued by a licensed health professional who is authorized to prescribe drugs.
- If the offense involves an anabolic steroid, anyone who is conducting or participating a research project involving an anabolic steroid as long as the project has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.
Essentially this means that you can be charged with possession of prescription drugs if you are discovered to have prescription drugs in your possession and are not able to produce a valid prescription from an authorized licensed medical professional or the amount of drugs that you have is more than what you are permitted to have.
Prescription drugs fall into several categories in the Ohio Schedule of Controlled Substances, which classifies drugs based on how dangerous and addictive they are. Xanax, Valium and some sedatives are considered schedule IV substances while OxyContin is considered a Schedule II substance. Schedule I substances are punished more severely than Schedule V substances. More information Ohio’s Schedule of controlled substances can be found here . The following is a list of common prescription drugs that individuals are caught within Cincinnati:
Possession of Prescription Drug Penalties
The penalties that you will face for possession of prescription drugs are largely dependent on the amount of the drug that you possessed and whether or not you have had any previous criminal offenses.
If you are convicted of possessing prescription drugs, you will most likely be charged with a first degree misdemeanor. This entails up to six months in jail and up to $1,000 in fines.
If you are convicted of possessing prescription drugs and have a previous drug offense, you will be charged with a fifth degree felony. This entails with up to a year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.
If you are convicted for possessing prescription drugs and the amount of the drug is equal to but less than five times the bulk amount, then you will be charged with aggravated possession of a controlled of prescription drugs. This is third degree felony, which entails up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
If you are convicted for possessing prescription drugs and the amount of the drug is equal to or greater than five times the bulk amount, you will be charged with aggravated possession of prescription drugs. This is second degree felony which entails a maximum prison sentence of eight years and up to $15,000 in fines.
If you are convicted for possessing prescription drugs and the amount of the drug is equal to or greater than 50 times the bulk amount, then you will be charged with aggravated possession prescription drugs. This is a first degree felony, which entails a maximum prison sentence of 10 years and up to $20,000 in fines.
If you are convicted for possessing prescription drugs and the amount of the drug is equal to or greater than 100 times the bulk amount, then you will face a first degree felony. This is typically referred to as a “major drug offense.” You will serve a maximum prison sentence of 10 years and pay up to $20,000 in fines.
Other Consequences of Possessing Prescription Drugs
In addition to prison time and hefty fines, a possession of prescription drug conviction will have a negative impact on other areas of your life as well. You may face difficulty keeping or finding a job, furthering your education, difficulty financially, maintaining professional licensures and maintaining custody of your children.
If you are convicted of possession of prescription drugs, you will also face a possible driver’s license suspension.
Due to the fact that Ohio drug laws are complicated, you should always consult with knowledgeable Cincinnati prescription drug possession lawyers who will be able to provide you with proper counsel regarding the specific facts and circumstances of your case.
Defending Possession of Prescription Drug Offenses
Regardless of what the facts and circumstances of your case are, there are defenses that can be raised on your behalf. Cincinnati prescription drug possession lawyers from LHA will take the time to examine what legal strategies are most appropriate in defending your case.
Perhaps there is an explanation for why you were in possession of prescription drugs – they were not yours and / or someone placed them in your belongings without your consent or knowledge. Perhaps there is a different reason as to why you had possession of drugs; you have a substance abuse problem or are going through a difficult period in your life. Regardless what happened in your case, there are ways of mitigating these factors and potentially receiving a lesser sentence.
The following are a list of factors that are taken into consideration in determining whether there were any errors made in your case:
- Whether there were any search warrants issued without probable cause;
- Whether an illegal search was conducted;
- Whether your Fourth Amendment rights were violated;
- Whether illegal forms of surveillance were involved;
- Whether your Miranda Rights were read in their entirety;
- Whether any evidence was illegally obtained;
- Whether lab results and analysis were handled properly.
If you are facing your first conviction of possession of prescription drugs in Ohio, the court may be more lenient with your sentence. A clean criminal record will undoubtedly work to your advantage if you are convicted. Cincinnati prescription drug possession lawyers from LHA will do everything in their power to argue for a reduction in your charges and minimizing your penalties.
Every day in Ohio, hundreds of individuals are charged with possession of prescription drugs. Although each case is different, it is imperative that you obtain an experienced, knowledgeable and compassionate attorney who will fight for your legal rights and best interest. Ohio prescription drug possession lawyers from LHA has successfully defended hundreds of individuals charged with possession of prescription drugs. Their knowledge, experience and compassion for your case will help you receive the justice you deserve.
Facing Charges? Call a Cincinnati Prescription Drug Possession Lawyer Today.
Ohio drug laws are incredibly complex, which is why fighting distribution charges on your own can quickly get you into real trouble. If you are arrested for distribution of amphetamines, your best defense is the help of an experienced Cincinnati drug lawyer. Your Cincinnati drug crime attorney can help create the best defense strategy for your unique case and ensure that you have the best outcome possible.
At Luftman, Heck, and Associates, our Cincinnati drug lawyers have years of experience fighting these kinds of charges, and we are prepared to do everything we can to represent your best interests. With our team headed by Brad Groene on your side, you will have the best chance to fight the charges successfully. We are available for our clients 24/7, so call our offices right now at (513) 338-1890 to set up a free consultation on your case.