If my son received a citation for a class 1 misdemeanor for 3 oz or less of marijuana concentrate, should he hire an attorney?

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If my son received a citation for a class 1 misdemeanor for 3 oz or less of marijuana concentrate, should he hire an attorney?

This happened after his room was searched at CSU. Athe re there programs that can reduce this charge? At 19, does he have any recourse at 21 to hide the charge?

Asked on February 1, 2013 under Criminal Law, Colorado

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you can afford an attorney it would be a good idea.  Try to find one the regularly practices in your jurisdiction and is aware of all of the programs available in your jurisdiction.  Programs vary depending on the funding and resources available in a particular county.  Many courts now offer pre-trial diversion programs that allow a defendant (especially younger ones) to be on an informal type of probation where they complete a drug awareness class and some community service hours in exchange for a dismissal.  This would be a best case scenario because it's easier to erase a dismissal than a conviction.  Considering his age, he does have some opportunities to keep this from haunting him.... but you need someone to help you ask the right questions in order to get access to the right program.  I know it's just "a misdemeanor", but even a misdemeanor can cause some employers to refuse employment opportunities.  Some scholarship committees will use the misdemeanor against him when deciding whether or not to grant a scholarship award.  Some licensing agencies will hold-up issuing certain types of license for drug related convictions.  I'm not trying to scare you, but to emphasize there are many potential negative consequences.  Investing in an attorney at this point is really an investment in his future.  If he simply cannot afford one, tell him to ask for a court appointed attorney.  They would also be aware of ways to help him minimize the impact on his future.

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Given the citation that your son received for possession of a controlled sustance, I suggest that he consult with a criminal defense attorney to assist in the current situation he finds himself in. Potentially if this is your son's first offense, the court could place him on "court probation" where he pays a fine, does community service work, and attends classes as to the dangers of taking drugs.

If he is successful, the charge may then be dismissed with no conviction on his record.


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