Can I fight a possesion of marijuana charge?

The police officers went through my bag. I was caught shoplifting a pair of pants that I needed for a new job. I did not have money to buy new pants. I had a pill bottle with under a gram of marijuana- mostly shake. I also had a pipe. They did not write me for a paraphernalia charge. My summons just says 18.2-250.1 possesion of marijuana. Also, it is my second offense for shoplifting. They did not have me sign my summons either. What is going to happen to me?

Asked on August 16, 2012 under Criminal Law, Virginia

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country you have the right to fight all criminal matters filed against yourself. Given the criminal situation that you are in, I suggest that you consult with a criminal defense attorney to give you advice as to how to try and resolve the situation you are in.

You need to appear at the first appearance per the summons you received in court. Failure to do so will result in the issuance of a bench warrant against you. At the first appearance you will be arraigned where the criminal charge(s) against you will be read and you will be instructed to enter a plea of guilty, not guilty or no contest.

There the court will set the matter for a settlement conference and trial if you plead not guilty. If convicted, you will most likely be fined and spend some time in jail. As such, it is imperative to consult with a criminal defense attorney about your matter.


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