Proudly Serving the People of South Carolina
Whether you are facing a first drug arrest or a repeat charge, all drug crime allegations should be taken seriously. Prosecutors and judges do not take these crimes lightly and will impose harsh penalties whenever possible. Putting an experienced and skilled criminal defense lawyer on your side is the best action you can take to fight back. Just because you have been accused, arrested, or charged does not automatically mean you will be convicted. You are innocent until proven guilty, guaranteed due process, and have the right to an effective defense.
At The Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe, LLC, you can count on the dedication and legal proficiency of our Columbia drug crimes attorney. Mr. Sharpe has successfully resolved hundreds of drug cases as a former public defender and in his current private practice. Our firm is prepared to fully investigate and construct your defense and to aggressively advocate for you throughout. We represent clients facing all types of drug charges, from simple possession to distribution.
Request your free initial consultation with our Columbia drug crimes attorney by contacting the Law Office of Patrick C. Sharpe, LLC online or at (803) 721-4615.
South Carolina drug crimes are governed by the South Carolina Code of Laws Chapter 53 which sets forth the various types of offenses and their definitions. How you are charged in any drug crime will depend on various factors, such as the type and amount of drug found in your possession, whether minors were involved in the crime, whether deadly weapons were used, your previous criminal history, if any, and other circumstances that may make the charges more serious (aggravated circumstances) or less serious (mitigating circumstances).
These crimes can include simple possession for one’s own use, sales or distribution, drug manufacture or cultivation, drug trafficking, and possession of drug paraphernalia. In the matter of possession, the state outlines two types: 1. Actual possession, such as when they are in your physical possession, such as on your person; 2. Constructive possession, in which they are under your control, such as in your home, office, or car. You are only allowed to have controlled substances when they have been lawfully prescribed by a doctor.
Penalties in a drug conviction will depend on the classification of the drug, its quantity, and other facts and circumstances of the case. Drug crimes can range from simple misdemeanors to serious felonies punishable by up to 25 years in prison and fines of up to $200,000.
Common penalties stemming from a drug crime conviction can include:
- Jail and/or prison time
- Community service hours
- Mandatory participation in a drug abuse treatment program
Drug Trafficking Offenses
When the drugs in your alleged crime involve a certain weight or quantity, you can be charged with the serious crime of trafficking. This can occur even if you had no intention of selling the drugs. State prosecutors aggressively pursue maximum sentences in drug trafficking cases; this means it is critical to put an equally aggressive defender on your side when facing such charges.
Marijuana Laws in South Carolina
While other states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana, South Carolina has not. Possession of one ounce or less in a first offense is punishable by a fine of $200 and 30 days in jail. A repeat of this offense will lead to increased jail time of up to a year and a fine of up to $2,000. Sales and trafficking of marijuana are charged as felonies with harsher penalties.
Our Firm Stands With You
Whether you are facing drug charges related to marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, opioids, or other prescription pills or drugs, our firm can help you seek the best possible results. Once you meet with Mr. Sharpe, he will review your case to determine your best course of action and begin taking the appropriate steps on your behalf.
He kept me informed about all of my options as well as ensured I received the best results.- Andre B.