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Can You Get a DUI for Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana?



Can You Get a DUI for Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana?

Driving is a privilege, and as such, you need to handle it responsibly and thoughtfully. Taking to the road when you are in no condition to do so is a flagrant abuse of that privilege. Irresponsible drivers could end up incurring a marijuana DUI charge or something similar.


You may be wondering if DUI charges related to marijuana are a real thing. After all, when people hear about DUIs, they immediately think about violations related to alcohol. We’ll be addressing that and many other relevant topics in this article.

Please feel free to read on and learn more about how you could be in violation of the law by driving under the influence of marijuana. The information you pick up here could wind up saving you from legal troubles down the road.

The Legal Status of Marijuana in Arizona

Before we go deeper into DUIs and how they relate to marijuana, let’s take a few moments to go over another topic of importance.  To be more specific, let’s talk about the legality of marijuana in the state of Arizona.

In case you missed it, Arizona residents made a huge decision regarding marijuana usage in the state during the last general election. Proposition 207, also known as the Smart and Safe Arizona Act, put forth the initiative to legalize the adult use of marijuana. The proposition also sought to legalize the possession and transfer of marijuana, provided that people follow certain rules.

Once Election Day came, the majority of Arizona residents decided to vote “yes” on Proposition 207, and thus the adult use of marijuana became legal.

With the passage of Proposition 207, Arizona residents over the age of twenty-one can now legally possess, use, and/or transfer up to one ounce of marijuana. Growing your own marijuana plants is legal now, but there are also restrictions placed on that.

The passage of Proposition 207 marks a clear turning point when it comes to how the state of Arizona treats and views marijuana. However, the passage of that proposition does not mean that Arizonans now have carte blanche to use marijuana any way they please. There are still activities related to marijuana that remain outlawed.

Marijuana-Related Activities That Remain Illegal in Arizona

Adults can now legally use marijuana in Arizona, but there are still existing rules limiting the usage. Let’s go over those restrictions so you can avoid violating them.

Smoking Marijuana in Public

If you do intend to use marijuana, you must do so only at home. Using marijuana in a public space is a violation of the law. Officials consider parks and other open areas public spaces.

Selling Marijuana

The sale of marijuana is guarded carefully by the state of Arizona. Even though individuals are now allowed to cultivate their own marijuana plants at home, selling what they grow is another matter altogether.

As of now, only licensed entities are allowed to sell marijuana in Arizona. More specifically, only medical marijuana dispensaries and marijuana establishments can sell those products.

Using Marijuana in the Workplace

The subject of using marijuana in the workplace is tricky because rules can vary from one place to another. Some employers may enact rules that ban the usage of marijuana in the workplace, and that is their right.

Employees must abide by the rules set in their workplace regarding marijuana usage. Failing to do so could lead to them losing their job or potentially facing other legal troubles.

Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana

Arizona is committed to keeping their roads safe for everyone. The state has  harsh laws related to driving under the influence to deter everyone from engaging in such a dangerous activity.

It should come as no surprise that driving under the influence of marijuana still remains illegal. According to Arizona law, operating any motor vehicle, boat, or aircraft right after using marijuana is not allowed.

What Constitutes a Marijuana DUI Violation in Arizona?

The threshold for committing a marijuana DUI violation in Arizona is not particularly high. According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, the authorities finding any trace of marijuana metabolites in your body can lead to a DUI violation.

Other states handle DUI violations a bit differently. Many of them will not charge you with violating any drug laws unless the level of marijuana metabolites in your bloodstream exceeds 0.08 percent. In Arizona, you can be cited for a marijuana violation even if the metabolite concentration in your blood is less than that threshold.

What that means is that Arizona residents should avoid using marijuana altogether if they plan on driving anytime soon. Most of the time, marijuana should only remain traceable in your body for about a couple of days. However, there are times when it could linger for a week or even longer than that.

What Are the Penalties for Committing a Marijuana DUI Violation?

Given how committed the state of Arizona is to discourage driving under the influence, you cannot be surprised that they have some harsh penalties. The penalties change depending on whether you are a first-time or repeat offender.

Penalties for the First DUI Violation

The penalties that come with your first marijuana DUI arrest include a jail sentence. At a minimum, you can expect to spend at least ten consecutive days in jail. That jail sentence could also be up to one hundred and eighty days.

You may also need to pay a fine of no less than $1250. Offenders must render community service and receive probation. The probationary period could last for up to five years.

Anyone found guilty of driving under the influence will also attend drug screening, treatment, and education programs. They will also install a certified ignition interlock device in your vehicle.

Lastly, they will suspend your driver’s license after your DUI violation. The suspension period will only last for ninety days if you attend Traffic Survival School. Failing to attend Traffic Survival School will lead to suspension of your driving privileges for one year.

Penalties for the Second DUI Violation

The jail sentence for a second DUI violation carries a heavy minimum. You’re looking at ninety days in jail at the least for that second violation, but that can still go up to one hundred and eighty days.

The fine goes up significantly too. The minimum fine will be set at $3000.

Like before, you will attend drug screening, treatment, and education programs. Community service and probation also remain as penalties.

They will suspend your driver’s license again. This time, the suspension will be a year, and attending Traffic Survival School will not change that.

Penalties for an Aggravated DUI Violation

A person can be guilty of aggravated DUI if they commit a third DUI violation within eighty-four months. Individuals who drive under the influence with a suspended license or with a person under fifteen in the vehicle can also receive charges of aggravated DUI.

The penalties for aggravated DUI are serious. You will still attend drug education, screening, and treatment programs while rendering community service, but there are other harsher penalties.

They will revoke your driver’s license for one year after an aggravated DUI charge. The state will also hit you with an onerous fine. The fine in question here could balloon up to $150,000.

Offenders are no longer looking at jail time. Instead, you will go to prison and receive a sentence of at least four months there. Depending on how the court views your case, your prison sentence may extend up to two years.

An Additional Note about DUI Marijuana Convictions

Although not a direct penalty of your negligent decision, you should know that an offense of that nature will stick with you. The passage of Proposition 207 has made it possible for individuals to erase various marijuana violations from their records. Possessing, using, and growing marijuana are examples of previous violations they can delete.

Those who are guilty of driving under the influence will not have that same opportunity. The error they made will stay on their record permanently.

Considering the effects of having any blemish on your record, you should think twice about driving your vehicle under the influence of marijuana. That risk is not worth taking.

How Do You Fight against a Potential Marijuana DUI Charge?

After being cited for a potential marijuana-related DUI violation, you may be coming up with ways to defend yourself. At that point, your most effective defense is to prove that you are a qualified medical marijuana patient.

It’s important to note here that you can use the medical defense if prescribed by a doctor. A recommendation is not the same thing as a prescription, so you can still get in trouble if the former is the only thing you have.

But what if you are not a medical marijuana patient? What can work as your defense in that scenario?

You should call a lawyer at that point. A lawyer can help by casting doubt on the legitimacy of the drug test results. They can request to have the sample retested in a bid to prove your innocence.

If you truly were not driving under the influence of marijuana at the time, a second test should provide a result that conflicts with the earlier false positive. Your lawyer can then use that other test result to demonstrate that it was the test that made an error and not you.

A lawyer could also suggest that the sample used in your case was tainted. If that is proven, then the DUI charge against you will look flimsy.

In any case, you should get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible if you receive a DUI violation. Suspected DUI violators are usually allowed to contact a lawyer as soon as they’re in custody.

Can You Refuse to Take a Drug Test After Being Pulled Over?

Arizona operates under the Implied Consent Law, and that makes a big difference in DUI cases. You might have assumed that refusing a drug test is allowed, but that is not the case in Arizona.

After you get your Arizona driver’s license, you automatically consent to any alcohol or drug tests while you’re operating your vehicle. Technically, you can still refuse the test, but that will lead to you facing stiff penalties.

For instance, they will instantly suspend your driver’s license after you refuse the test. Refusing the test once will lead to a suspension for at least a year.  If you refuse a second time, your suspension will be for two years.

On top of that, you must complete a drug screening program before you become eligible to have your driver’s license reinstated. Completing that program will be necessary if you want a restricted driving permit.

Can You Be Charged with a Crime for Using Marijuana in Your Vehicle?

One last thing to note here is that you can be charged with a crime if you used marijuana while you were inside your vehicle. It doesn’t matter whether you were driving the vehicle or not. As long as there’s proof that you used marijuana inside your vehicle, you can be charged with a crime.

If you intend to use marijuana, do so only while inside a private residence. Nothing good can come out of using marijuana elsewhere unless you have a medical exemption.

Marijuana DUI violations carry heavy penalties, and they can also stay with you for the rest of your life. Don’t sit idly by if you are staring at a mistaken DUI charge. Contact us at the Schill Law Group and allow us to help you prove your innocence.

Can You Smoke Marijuana in Public in Arizona?

Can You Smoke Marijuana in Public in Arizona?



Can You Smoke Marijuana in Public in Arizona?

More and more states throughout the country are changing their policies regarding marijuana. Arizona is among those states and you may be wondering if recent changes to laws have made smoking marijuana in public acceptable.


That’s a good question to ask and answering it is the focus of this article. Along with determining the legality of using marijuana in public, we’ll also touch on other relevant matters.

The laws involving marijuana usage in Arizona have changed significantly. You must stay up-to-date on them to avoid running into trouble with the law. Continue reading to see which changes have been made and how they could potentially impact you.

How Proposition 207 Affects Arizona’s Marijuana’s Laws

The big changes that have been made to Arizona’s marijuana laws come courtesy of the recently passed Proposition 207. Many The voters in the 2020 election chose “yes” on Proposition 207, which is otherwise known as the Smart and Safe Arizona Act.

Arguably the biggest changes included in Proposition 207 were the ones related to the usage and possession of marijuana. Thanks to the new laws that have been enacted, it is now legal for adults over the age of twenty-one to use or possess up to one ounce of marijuana.

Notably, the relaxed laws mean that adults of the appropriate age no longer need a medical exception to use marijuana legally. Still, there are some restrictions in place regarding marijuana usage for adults.

Smoking Marijuana in Public

While Proposition 207 has relaxed many of the laws related to using marijuana recreationally, there are still limitations you need to know about. Among the limitations you must be familiar with are the ones that dictate where you can smoke marijuana.

Smoking marijuana in the comfort of your own home is not going to be an issue. Proposition 207 has made that act legal.

However, you cannot use marijuana if you are in public.

The laws specifically state that using marijuana in a public or open space is not allowed. It doesn’t matter if you’re of the legal age and you’re following amount restrictions, you can still be found in violation of the law by smoking marijuana where you shouldn’t.

Public Places Where Smoking Marijuana Is Not Allowed

The term “public space” is vague so let’s define it more clearly here. According to Arizona law, public space is “an enclosed area to which the public is invited or in which the public is permitted.”

Examples of public spaces where people are not allowed to use marijuana include airports, restaurants, and shopping malls. It’s also important to note here that not all the spots in your place of residence may allow marijuana.

For instance, you may be allowed to smoke marijuana inside your apartment, but that’s probably the only place in that establishment where that activity is allowed. If you are planning to hang out in one of your apartment’s common areas, don’t bother bringing marijuana along because you’re not allowed to use it there.

Another notable wrinkle here is that your private residence can be deemed a public place as well depending on how it is being used. Homes that are being used as care facilities are considered public spaces too. Don’t smoke marijuana if your home is being used in that way unless you want to run afoul of the law.

Open Spaces Where Smoking Marijuana Is Not Allowed

Now that we’ve defined public spaces, let’s turn our attention to open spaces. The state of Arizona defines open spaces as parks, pedestrian thoroughfares, sidewalks, and walkways.

It doesn’t matter whether you isolate yourself while at the park or any other open space. Smoking marijuana there is illegal and you will be penalized if you are caught.

Speaking of penalties…

The Penalties for Getting Caught Smoking Marijuana in Public

Although using marijuana in private is now legal for adults in Arizona, that doesn’t mean that you can subject anyone to that activity. You still need to keep that action private. Failing to do so could lead to you facing some penalties.

The first time you are cited for smoking marijuana in public, you will be charged with a petty offense. The penalty for committing a petty offense is a fine. The fine for a petty offense is capped at $300.

You do not need to worry about jail time if you are caught smoking marijuana in public once.

Getting cited for using marijuana in public multiple times is a different issue. This time around, you will be charged with a class 3 misdemeanor.

Unlike petty offenses, class 3 misdemeanors carry two penalties. The first is a fine. The maximum amount you may pay after being found guilty of committing a class 3 misdemeanor is $500.

Violators may also be staring at potential jail time after they’re caught using marijuana in public more than once. The maximum jail sentence for that violation is 30 days. Partnering with an experienced attorney could help you get that sentence reduced, though.

Marijuana and the Workplace

Proposition 207 has not placed limitations on what employers can do with regards to marijuana. Employers are still allowed to set up their own rules regarding marijuana usage within the workplace.

As an employer, you can decide to prohibit the use of marijuana in the office. You can also enact certain policies that limit marijuana usage for your employees.

Upon being caught, an employee may argue that they were not smoking marijuana inside the office. They may argue that using marijuana in the parking lot or shared bathroom is not equivalent to smoking marijuana inside the workplace.

Even if they technically were not using marijuana inside the office, they may still violate certain rules. More specifically, smoking marijuana in those places constitutes using marijuana in public. You can report them to law enforcement for that violation and penalize them as you see fit for their actions.

Understandably, you may be worried that your current or former employee may attempt to sue you after you reprimanded them. Don’t be afraid because Arizona has laws in place that protect employers from being sued by former employees who were fired after doing drugs or drinking on the job.

The bottom line here for employees is that marijuana usage is best confined to the home. Bringing that habit to work without clearing it with your employer first can lead to some serious trouble. You can steer clear of that potential headache by only using marijuana in your place of residence.

Disqualifying Applicants for Marijuana Usage

Business owners are not required to allow or even accommodate their employees who use, possess, or display marijuana. If you’ve already established guidelines indicating that marijuana is not allowed in your place of business, you can reprimand your employees for violating them.

Some employers want to maintain drug-free work settings, which is why they are careful about who they hire. In pursuit of maintaining a drug-free workspace, you can ask applicants to participate in a drug test. If an applicant tests positive for marijuana, you are well within your rights as an employer to decline offering the job.

There is an exception for those who have been cleared for medical marijuana usage. Employers cannot cite a positive marijuana test as the reason why they denied an applicant if that person in question has medical marijuana exception.

Still, even those with a medical marijuana exception can only use the substance at home. If you found them smoking at work, you can penalize them.

One more thing to point out here is that marijuana users may be disqualified from certain jobs even if they have a medical exception. Using marijuana while performing certain tasks may bring up safety concerns. The safety of people on the job site takes precedence in that scenario.

smoking marijuana in a car

How Smoking Marijuana Affects Your Driving Privileges

Many of us often associate driving under the influence or DUI violations with drunk driving. It’s easy to understand why that happens because many DUI violations do indeed involve individuals who have consumed way too much alcohol still trying to operate their vehicles.

You should know that you can still be cited for a DUI violation even if you only used marijuana. Driving under the influence of marijuana was illegal prior to the enactment of Proposition 207 and that remains the case today.

Why Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana Is Illegal

The dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol are well known but don’t discount how much marijuana usage can impair you as well. The CDC has highlighted the different ways in which marijuana usage can affect your driving skills.

Per this fact sheet from the CDC, using marijuana can slow down your reaction while also adversely affecting your ability to make decisions. Even your coordination and perception can be adversely affected by marijuana usage. You can easily imagine how negative effects such as those can prove deadly when you’re behind the wheel of your car.

At this point, there is no roadside test that can accurately tell if you recently used marijuana. Don’t assume that the lack of an accurate test means you can get away with driving under the influence of marijuana, though. You may still be tested for marijuana after a potential incident.

The tricky thing about marijuana too is that it tends to hang around in the human body. Studies have found that marijuana can still be detected in a person’s body even though the last time they smoked was days or even weeks before. Remember too that you can be cited for a DUI violation if a drug metabolite is found in your system.

Err on the side of caution and avoid driving if you know that your head is not clear after using marijuana. Disregarding your current condition can land you in big trouble.

The Penalties for Getting Caught Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana

The penalties for getting caught driving while under the influence of marijuana are harsher than the ones levied for smoking the substance in public. That holds true even for first-time offenders.

The first time you’re caught driving under the influence of marijuana, you will be sentenced to spend at least ten consecutive days in jail. You will also be fined not less than $1250 for your negligent actions. Offenders also render community service.

Individuals found guilty of driving under the influence also need to take part in education, screening, and treatment programs. Participating in one of those programs should teach you how dangerous impaired driving can truly be.

Penalties become more severe for repeat offenses.

The fine is now a minimum of $3000 while your jail sentence will be no shorter than 90 days. Rendering community service and participating in education, screening, and treatment programs also remain as requirements. They may revoke your driver’s license for twelve months if you are guilty of driving under the influence of marijuana more than once.

Can You Smoke Marijuana in Your Vehicle if You Are Not Driving?

Driving under the influence of marijuana is prohibited in the state of Arizona, but what about smoking marijuana in your car? Is that illegal even if you do not intend to drive?

Even with no intention to drive, smoking marijuana inside your vehicle is still prohibited. That makes sense considering how marijuana can affect you physically and mentally. You may not be planning to use the vehicle, but you may still move it accidentally in your impaired state.

One wrong move can lead to an accident, so it’s best to avoid being anywhere near your vehicle if you’re smoking marijuana.

By the way, flying an airplane and controlling a boat are also illegal actions when performed under the influence of marijuana.

Were you recently cited for violating one of Arizona’s laws regarding marijuana? If that’s the case, you will need expert legal representation.

A good attorney will argue on your behalf and prove your innocence if you were wrongfully accused. Your attorney can also negotiate for more lenient penalties on your behalf if you were found guilty of violating certain laws.

We at the Schill Law Group are ready to lend our legal expertise to all Arizona residents. Contact us today if you need expert legal minds fighting for you.

Arizona Drug Crime Laws



Arizona Drug Crime Laws

Drugs continue to be a serious threats to public safety throughout the country. States are fighting the spread of those dangerous substances in their own ways with the help of their drug crime laws.

The state of Arizona has its own tough laws on the books that seek to stamp out the rampant spread of drugs in our neighborhoods. You need to know more about those laws to truly understand how costly it could be if authorities catch you using or possessing those problematic substances.

In this article, we will go in-depth on Arizona’s drug crime laws. We’ll talk about what constitutes a drug offense, the substances you must avoid, and the penalties you may face if you dabble in drugs. Feel free to read on if you also want to learn the latest developments involving Arizona’s marijuana laws.

Arizona’s New Marijuana Laws

First off, let’s talk about marijuana because the Grand Canyon State recently adopted big changes that affect how they police that substance.  In case you missed it, Arizona residents approved Proposition 207 in the general election.

Also known as the Smart and Safe Arizona Act, Proposition 207 significantly changes the laws regarding marijuana possession, usage, and cultivation. It legalizes the possession, usage, and cultivation of marijuana for Arizona residents assuming they meet certain conditions.

The New Marijuana Possession and Usage Laws

With the passage of Proposition 207, adults over the age of twenty-one in Arizona can now legally possess and use up to an ounce of marijuana for personal use. They can also buy marijuana provided that the amount they purchase does not exceed one ounce.

Previously, Arizona residents needed medical clearance if they wanted to possess, purchase, or use marijuana legally.

Notably, those with a medical exemption for marijuana usage can continue purchasing and using marijuana. For them, the purchasing limit is 2.5 ounces over fourteen days.

The New Marijuana Cultivation Laws

Proposition 207 has also ushered in new laws about marijuana cultivation. According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, adults over the age of twenty-one are legally allowed to cultivate their own marijuana plants at their private residence.

The number of marijuana plants they can cultivate in one home can vary depending on who lives there. If there’s one adult present, the limit of marijuana plants that can be grown is six. If there are two or more adults present, they can cultivate up to twelve marijuana plants.

Cultivation is also legal for medical marijuana patients and caregivers. They can grow up to twelve marijuana plants at their residence if the nearest dispensary is more than twenty-five miles away.

Violations Related to Marijuana

It’s important to point out here that there are still laws that limit the possession, usage, and cultivation of marijuana in Arizona. Let’s detail them in this section.

Marijuana Possession Violations

Remember that adults over the age of twenty-one can only possess one ounce of marijuana. Exceed that limit even by a tenth of an ounce, and you could receive a $300 fine, according to NORML.

If they catch you in possession of more than 2.5 ounces of marijuana, you’re looking at potentially up to 1.5 years in jail and a maximum fine of $150,000. For possessing more than two but less than four pounds of marijuana, jail time goes up to potentially two years, and the maximum fine is $150,000.

Individuals caught in possession of more than four pounds of marijuana may be incarcerated for up to three years and fined up to $150,000.

Marijuana Usage Violations

There are limits still placed on marijuana usage in the state of Arizona. Even if you’re an adult, you are not allowed to smoke marijuana in public.

Operating any vehicle is also illegal if you used marijuana. They may cite individuals found guilty of committing that offense for DUI. You must deal with the penalties that accompany a DUI. You’ll have to deal with the penalties that accompany a DUI violation.

Marijuana Cultivation Violations

Apart from limiting the number of marijuana plants adults can grow, Arizona law also indicates that you must cultivate the plants in a specific area. Individuals who want to grow their own marijuana must use an enclosed area in their home to grow the plants. You must also secure the enclosed area with a lock or device to keep its contents away from minors.

Growing more marijuana plants than what is legally allowed is a felony. Violators could be incarcerated for up to seven years and fined up to $150,000.

Marijuana Selling Violations

You should also note that selling the marijuana you grow inside your home could be an illegal action. Arizona residents must first secure clearance to operate as a marijuana establishment if they want to sell their cultivated plants.

Selling more than the legally allowed amount of marijuana is considered a felony. Penalties will climb depending on how much you illegally sold. In cases where an individual sold more than four pounds of marijuana, that person could receive up to ten years and a $150,000 fine.

Marijuana Trafficking Violations

Marijuana can now be legally bought and sold within Arizona. However, bringing in marijuana from another state into Arizona still counts as a trafficking offense. The severity of the penalties you’ll face for trafficking will depend on how much marijuana you attempted to smuggle into the state.

Attempting to bring in less than two pounds of marijuana can lead to being incarcerated for up to seven years and getting hit with a $150,000 fine. For trafficking more than two pounds of marijuana, the fine stays the same, but the maximum sentence goes up to ten years.

Marijuana Laws Regarding Minors

Although Proposition 207 has relaxed the laws regarding marijuana possession, usage, and cultivation for adults, they remain strict for minors. If you’re under the age of twenty-one, possessing or using marijuana is out of the question.

Minors caught with marijuana will be charged with a civil penalty the first time around. A second violation will lead to a petty offense charge, while a third violation translates to a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Arizona’s Dangerous Drug Crime Laws

It’s fair to say that Arizona’s attitude towards marijuana has changed. That’s only one drug of note, however. You’ll find that the state remains strict when it comes to substances classified as “dangerous drugs.”

So, what are the “dangerous drugs” according to Arizona law?

Per the law, a dangerous drug is any material, compound, or mixture that contains certain hallucinogenic substances. Those hallucinogenic substances in question include isomers, salts, and salts of isomers. Cannabimimetic items with those same hallucinogenic substances also qualify as dangerous drugs unless they received a specific exemption.

Stimulants that contain those hallucinogenic substances that are prone to abuse similarly qualify as dangerous drugs. Depressants that can be abused are also regarded as dangerous drugs, according to Arizona law. Items that contain anabolic steroids, their esters, isomers, and/or their salts are similarly considered as dangerous drugs.

Specific examples of dangerous drugs include amphetamines, ketamine, and methamphetamine, to name a few.

Violations Involving Dangerous Drugs

The state of Arizona is not lenient when it comes to dangerous drugs. Residents can violate the state’s drug laws in a variety of ways. They also come with harsh penalties.

Possessing, using, or selling any dangerous drug is illegal in the state. Residents are also forbidden from manufacturing or even owning the equipment and chemicals used to produce dangerous drugs. Trafficking and administering dangerous drugs to another person are also considered illegal actions.

Penalties for Dangerous Drug Violations

You could receive a long prison sentence if you’re guilty of violating Arizona’s dangerous drug laws. When it comes to methamphetamines specifically, the prison sentences are long.

Individuals who sell, produce, and possess items for trafficking methamphetamine are looking at five years in prison at the least.

Often, though, the prison sentence handed down to those who committed those violations is ten years. Depending on the circumstances of your case, the sentence could go all the way up to fifteen years.

Residents who repeat those violations will be looking at even longer prison sentences.

At a minimum, a repeat offender can expect to spend ten years in prison. The maximum sentence is twenty years, while the presumptive sentence is fifteen years.

Depending on the violation you committed, you may also be deemed ineligible for parole or to have your prison sentence suspended.

Beyond the prison sentence, violators can receive fines. The minimum is $1,000. The fine could also be equivalent to three times the value of the items that constituted the dangerous drug violation.

Violators can also receive probation. During their probation, violators must render at least 360 hours of community restitution.

What Is a Serious Drug Offense in Arizona?

Violations that involve dangerous drugs are handled seriously in Arizona. On top of that, the state makes additional efforts to curb the spread of illegal drugs by clamping down hard on serious drug offenders.

When referring to serious drug offenses, we’re mainly talking about violations that involve producing, selling, and trafficking drugs.

There’s also a financial element that turns what could otherwise be a regular drug offense into a serious drug offense. More specifically, if the individual caught made upwards of $25,000 from their drug dealings, their violation will likely a serious drug offense.

You can receive a serious drug offense if you’re part of a larger network of people dealing drugs.

Penalties for Committing a Serious Drug Offense in Arizona

People caught violating one of Arizona’s dangerous drug laws could end up in prison for more than a decade. That prison sentence pales in comparison to what you could receive for a serious drug offense.

Whether you were a solo drug offender or part of a network, you may receive life in prison if you’re convicted. Like with dangerous drug violations, you cannot be pardoned or get your sentence suspended easily. Serious drug offenders must spend a minimum of twenty-five years in prison before they become eligible to get their sentence commuted.

Considering how long a potential prison sentence can be if you’re convicted, fighting the false charges against you is crucial. You’ll need a skilled and experienced lawyer to take up your case.

How a Lawyer Can Help You Fight Your Drug Charges

Arizona residents accused of violating one of the state’s drug crime laws can use different defenses in court.

If you believe that the police planted drugs on you during a routine traffic stop or some other previous interaction, your lawyer can hone in on that during the trial. Your lawyer may also argue that they obtained the illegal drugs through an illegal search.

Given the new laws that the state has enacted regarding marijuana, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that a police officer may mistakenly arrest you. If that does indeed happen, your lawyer can point out that you did nothing illegal. Your lawyer may even argue that you are due compensation for the mistake made in your case.

A police officer may also mistakenly assume that you possessed an illegal amount of marijuana. That may happen if the officer didn’t know about your medical exemption. Once again, that’s a scenario where your lawyer can prove your innocence and possibly even get you some compensation.

There are also police officers that resort to trapping private citizens to make arrests. Citing an occurrence of entrapment is a viable defense in some drug cases. Allow your lawyer to emphasize that point if applicable during your defense.

It’s not an exaggeration to say that a drug charge can ruin your life. If you are innocent of the crime, you need to fight back and prove your innocence.

Allow us at the Quirk Law Group to fight on your behalf. Contact us today and find out how we can help you combat the bogus drug charges you’re facing.