Weed is a controversial drug. In some U.S. states, it is legal, and in others, it is not. If you are found to be in possession of weed (or Cannabis) in a state where it isn’t legal then you can still go to jail. The sentences given to those guilty of possession of Cannabis vary depending on the amount that the person was caught with.
Ways to Avoid Jail
If you live in a state where Cannabis isn’t legalized and you have been found with a small amount of weed, then this post will tell you how you can avoid going to jail.
Hire an Attorney
The first step that you need to take if you want to avoid a custodial sentence is to hire an attorney. According to a team of Colorado Criminal Defense Attorneys, an experienced lawyer will be able to protect your rights and use their knowledge and expertise to get you a good deal. In order to select an attorney, you need to consider their level of experience, reviews, and win-to-lose ratio. Most attorneys will publish all of this information on their sites. You may also be able to negotiate a payment arrangement with them if you are on a budget.
When you reach out to an attorney, they will book an appointment for you to come and see them in their offices. The purpose of this is to interview you and find out what your case is all about. When you go and see them, you mustn’t lie. A lot of people make the mistake of lying to their attorneys. If you lie to your attorney then the defense that they make for you will be rooted in falsehoods. If the prosecution has evidence that you have lied, then your entire defense will be ruined and your lawyer will probably quit.
The biggest mistake that you can make is talking too much to the police when you are arrested. A lot of people can’t keep their mouths closed when they are arrested, mainly because they are scared. Any experienced lawyer will tell you that you should say nothing until you have legal representation in the room with you. The police will no doubt try to pressure you into admitting guilt, but you must remain strong and mustn’t cave in. Admitting guilt in the police station will make it very difficult for your lawyer to defend you in court.
Another mistake that you need to avoid making is making excuses in the police interview room (or in general). When it comes to sentencing, the judge will ask you to stand up and explain yourself. You should, with confidence, explain why you had Cannabis. If you make excuses during sentencing (or in the police interview room) you will make yourself look like a liar who’s trying to avoid the consequences of your actions, which isn’t a good look. Do not make excuses to your lawyer, either.
Throughout the legal process, accept responsibility (other than when you are in the interview room). A small amount of weed isn’t going to lead to a hefty jail sentence, but it can still lead to jail nonetheless. If you want to avoid prison, then you need to accept responsibility for your actions. The worst thing that you can try and do is make excuses, as already mentioned. Accepting responsibility for your actions to your lawyer will ingratiate you to them. They will then help to create a defense for you that’s based on your acceptance of guilt.
When you are given an opportunity to talk to the judge and jury, apologize. People who don’t appear remorseful are often punished to the full extent of the law. No judge or jury wants to see a person stand up arrogantly and declare that they aren’t to blame (or that their actions didn’t hurt anybody). When it comes to minor drug arrests, it is very common for people to do this, and this is why they are often given very large sentences. Apologizing for your actions will make you look a lot better.
An extremely effective way of getting a sentence reduction (or no sentence at all) is to proactively sign up for a rehab program. It’s highly likely that your lawyer will recommend that you do this. A rehab program will show the judge that you are making a proactive effort to change your life and kick your addiction to weed. Many rehab programs can be accessed in the community for free. If you have a little more money to spend, then you could sign up for an inpatient rehab program. An inpatient program will look a lot better but can be extremely expensive.
If you have friends that are also addicted to drugs or that are recreational users, then distancing yourself from them can help you to avoid getting caught with drugs in the first place. A lot of people use weed socially. If you are one such person and your addiction to the drug is rooted in your friendship circle, then cutting these people out of your life will help you to overcome it. If you distance yourself from your friends pre-sentencing, then your lawyer will be able to tell the judge about this, which will help to make you look a lot better.
Finally, after you are arrested but before you are sentenced, try to do as many positive things in the community as you can. A lot of people do absolutely nothing after they are arrested, which doesn’t look good. Taking steps to contribute positively to the community (i.e., through charity work) can help you to look like you are rehabilitated and that you have learned your lesson. A very effective way of making yourself look good is to participate in drug and alcohol counseling, and work with people suffering from addictions—this will make you look like you are giving back to the community and helping others to avoid making the same mistakes as you.
Despite how common it is for young people to use weed today it is still illegal in a lot of places. If you are found with even a small amount in a state where it’s criminalized, then you can be sent to jail. If you have been arrested, then follow the advice set out here to avoid a custodial sentence.