Virginia Woman Arrested in Sterling for Various Drug Crimes
Loudoun County Sheriff’s deputies arrested and charged a woman from Sterling, Virginia, for various drug crimes, including possession and intent to distribute, according to an article by the Loudoun Times-Mirror.
On January 17th at approximately 4 p.m., sheriff’s deputies responded to reports of loitering in a restaurant parking lot near the 45900 block of Waterview Plaza. When the deputies searched the Sterling woman, they found a Schedule III controlled substance and drug paraphernalia.
Shortly thereafter, the deputies took the Sterling woman into custody. Then the authorities charged her with:
- Possession of drug paraphernalia;
- Possession of a controlled substance; and
- Possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute.
At this point, the Sterling woman remains in custody at the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center without bond. While she waits for her court case to develop, it seems appropriate to review the standard Virginia penalties for the aforementioned crimes.
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
Under Code of Virginia Section 54.1-3466, it is unlawful to possess drug paraphernalia. Any person who violates this section is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. If convicted, the offender can face a maximum sentence of 12 months in jail and $2,500 in fines.
Possession of a Controlled Substance
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-250, it is generally unlawful to possess controlled substances. Though Virginia law does establish an exception for medical use, assuming there is approval from a licensed doctor.
The Virginia penalties for unlawful possession change based on the type of controlled substance in question. For example, unlawful possession of:
- Schedule I/II Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a Class 5 felony with a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and $2,500 in criminal fines;
- Schedule III Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a Class 1 misdemeanor with the same maximum sentence described previously; and
- Schedule IV Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a Class 2 misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of six months in jail and $1,000 in fines.
Possession with Intent to Distribute
Under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-248, it is generally unlawful to manufacture, sell, or otherwise distribute controlled substances. This section also prohibits the possession of controlled substances with the intent to distribute. As noted above, however, there is an exception for approved medical use.
Section 18.2-248 applies the same punishment to both offenses, fluctuating based on the type and amount of controlled substance in question. Generally speaking, distribution or possession with intent to distribute of:
- Schedule I/II Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a felony with a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and $500,000 in criminal fines;
- Schedule III Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a Class 5 felony with the same maximum sentence described previously; and
- Schedule IV Controlled Substances — Qualifies as a Class 6 felony with a maximum sentence of five years in prison $2,500 in fines.
Do You Need Legal Help?
If you need legal help with charges for unlawful possession or other drug crimes in Virginia, it can be decidedly beneficial to speak with an accomplished criminal defense lawyer. The Leesburg drug crimes lawyers at Simms Showers LLP have multifaceted experience in the arena of criminal defense, including unlawful possession. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.