Police Officer Arrested for Drug Crimes in Virginia Beach
After a lengthy investigation, the Virginia Beach Police Department arrested one of its officers for a drug crime, according to an article by The Virginian-Pilot. The officer in question faces six counts of unlawful possession of a Schedule III controlled substance.
According to official reports, the drug crimes in question happened from June 2019 to January 2020. After the police department received a tip about this officer, they launched an investigation and, ultimately, arrested the alleged offender. Correspondingly, the police department also suspended the officer without pay while the Office of Internal Affairs conducted an administrative review.
At the moment, the officer remains in custody at the Virginia Beach Correctional Facility without bond. While the legal process develops for this officer, it seems fitting to review several applicable laws concerning Schedule III controlled substances in Virginia.
Definition of a Schedule III Controlled Substance
Code of Virginia Section 54.1-3449 details the conditions for classification in Schedule III. Under Virginia law, a substance is placed in Schedule III if:
- There is a likelihood of abuse, but less than the substances in Schedule I/II;
- Medical use is currently accepted in the United States; and
- Abusing the substance can lead to high mental addiction or moderate to low physical addiction.
Code of Virginia Section 54.1-3450 lists the substances that are classified under Schedule III, including:
- Anabolic steroids;
- Barbituric acid;
- Codeine; and
- Various other substances that meet the Schedule III criteria above.
Possession of a Schedule III Controlled Substance
Code of Virginia Section 18.2-250 makes it unlawful to possess controlled substances. While there are narrow exceptions for approved and licensed use, typically, possession of a controlled substance is a criminal offense in Virginia.
The punishment for a violation of Section 18.2-250 largely depends on the type of controlled substance in question. For example, unlawful possession of a:
- Schedule I/II Controlled Substance — Is punishable as a Class 5 felony with a maximum of $2,500 in fines and 10 years in prison;
- Schedule III Controlled Substance — Is punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor with a maximum of $2,500 in fines and 12 months in jail;
- Schedule IV Controlled Substance — Is punishable as a Class 3 misdemeanor with a maximum of $1,000 in fines and six months in jail;
- Schedule V Controlled Substance — Is punishable as a Class 3 misdemeanor with a maximum of $500 in fines; or
- Schedule VI Controlled Substance — Is punishable as a Class 4 misdemeanor with a maximum of $250 in fines.
Do You Need Legal Help?
If you need legal assistance with charges for a drug crime or a similar offense under Virginia criminal law, it can be exceedingly productive to consult with an established criminal defense lawyer. With more than 140 years of combined legal experience, the Leesburg drug crimes lawyers at Simms Showers LLP are well-positioned to help answer questions and mount an effective defense in criminal matters. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.