Domestic Dispute Leads to Illegal Drug Charges for Virginia Man
After initially responding to a domestic dispute, Stafford County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a man from Dumfries, Virginia, for possession of illegal drugs and several other crimes, reported The Free Lance-Star.
The deputies went to Paradise Court on Tuesday, August 7th at approximately 4:30 p.m. They were responding to a domestic violence incident and quickly arrested a separate suspect. But in the process, the deputies noticed a suspicious vehicle.
The vehicle in question had darkly tinted windows, which violates Virginia law. Additionally, the deputies watched as several people moved to and from the vehicle. So the deputies approached the vehicle and began to question the Dumfries man and his passenger.
After a K-9 unit indicated the presence of illegal drugs, the deputies conducted a full search of the vehicle. After completing the search, the deputies found marijuana, nine bags of a white powder, drug paraphernalia and a firearm. As a result of this discovery, the deputies arrested Dumfries man and his passenger.
At this point, the Dumfries man faces criminal charges for possession of illegal drugs with the intent to distribute, possession of a firearm and illegal drugs, as well as two traffic offenses.
In light of this development, it seems like an opportune time to review Virginia laws and penalties for possession with intent to distribute, as well as the possession of a firearm and illegal drugs.
Possession with Intent to Distribute
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-248, it is unlawful to distribute, manufacture, sell, or gift illegal drugs. Section 18.2-248 also makes it unlawful to possess illegal drugs with the intent to distribute manufacture, sell, or gift. Essentially, if a person possesses a large quantity of illegal drugs, they may face charges for possession with intent to distribute.
In most cases, possession with intent to distribute is a felony crime in Virginia. The penalty structure for this felony offense includes imprisonment for 5 to 40 years and fines up to $500,000.
Possession of a Firearm and Illegal Drugs
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-308.4, it is unlawful for a person to possess a firearm and illegal drugs at the same time. There is a knowledge requirement. Stated otherwise, a person must know, or have a reason to know, that they are in possession of a firearm and illegal drugs.
In most cases, possession of a firearm and illegal drugs is a Class 6 felony in Virginia. The penalty structure for this Class 6 felony includes imprisonment for one to five years and fines up to $2,500.
Contact Us Today for Help
If you are facing charges for drug crimes in Virginia, it is wise to speak with a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney. The attorneys at Simms Showers LLP, servicing Leesburg, Winchester, Fairfax, and Manassas, have the knowledge and capabilities to help criminal defendants fight back against drug charges in Virginia. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.