Virginia Police Arrest Hopewell Man for Cocaine & Firearm Crimes
Virginia police officers arrested and charged a 23-year-old man from Hopewell for drug crimes and weapon offenses, according to an article by NBC affiliate WWBT. In making this arrest, police seized cocaine and various other contraband from the Hopewell man’s possession.
In terms of background, police officers executed a residential search warrant on Friday morning in the 3300 block of Courthouse Road. At approximately 5 a.m., officers entered the residence and conducted a thorough search of the premises.
As a result of that search, police officers located cocaine, firearm accessories, and one kilogram of an unidentified substance. The Virginia Department of Forensic Science’s Controlled Substance Section is examining and attempting to identify that substance. Depending on those results, the Hopewell man could face additional criminal charges.
At this point, the Hopewell man is detailed at the Riverside Regional Jail awaiting his arraignment. While this man awaits the next steps in his case, it feels like a perfect time to review Virginia laws concerning the possession and distribution of cocaine, which is referred to legally as a controlled substance.
Possession of Cocaine
Code of Virginia Section 18.2-250 prohibits the possession of any controlled substance, including cocaine. There is an exception for medical necessity, if there is a valid prescription from a licensed professional. Otherwise, it is unlawful to possess cocaine or other controlled substances in Virginia.
The penalties for a violation of Section 18.2-250 change based on the type of controlled substance in question. For the substances classified in Schedule I/II, including cocaine, unlawful possession is a Class 5 felony. When a person is convicted of a Class 5 felony in Virginia, they are subject to a prison term of one to 10 years and criminal fines up to $2,500.
Distribution of Cocaine
Code of Virginia Section 18.2-248 makes it unlawful to:
- Distribute a controlled substance;
- Give away a controlled substance;
- Manufacture a controlled substance;
- Sell a controlled substance; or
- Possess a controlled substance with the intent to distribute, give, manufacture, or sell.
The usual punishment scheme for violating Section 18.2-248 with respect to a Schedule I/II controlled substance is as follows:
- First Violation — Classified as a felony and punishable by five to 40 years in prison and $500,000 in criminal fines;
- Second Violation — Classified as a felony and punishable by five years to life in prison and $500,000 in criminal fines; and
- Third or Subsequent Violation — Classified as a felony and punishable by 10 years to life in prison and $500,000 in criminal fines.
Do You Need Legal Help?
If you are facing charges for cocaine possession or distribution in Virginia, it is wise to reach out to a talented criminal defense attorney. The attorneys at Simms Showers LLP, servicing Leesburg, Winchester, Fairfax, and Manassas, have defended against many types of drug charges in Virginia, including cocaine possession and distribution. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact our Leesburg drug crimes lawyers today for a free initial consultation.