Drug use among college students is a substantial problem in the state of Texas. Last month, a Texas A&M University student was found unresponsive at a fraternity house after overdosing on drugs. The student was later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital. After determining that drugs were in the house, law enforcement arrested four young men on charges of possession of a controlled substance while others were cited for having drug paraphernalia.
Common Issues Faced by Texas Minors
Possession and paraphernalia charges are just some of the more common crimes for which minors, or individuals under the age of 21, are convicted of in the state of Texas. Some of the other most common issues faced by minors in the state of Texas include alcohol related offenses including underage drinking and DWIs, assault, criminal trespassing, shoplifting and theft. Minors faced with these issues often find it essential to retain the services of a top Texas criminal defense attorney.
Potential Defenses in Texas to Possession Charges
When minors are faced with drug or paraphernalia possession charges, skilled criminal defense attorneys know how to create strong legal defenses to the charges. While there are actually several available legal defense to these types of charges, an experienced lawyer will know which defense is the best to use for the case at hand. Some of the most common strategies used by criminal defense attorneys to defend minors in these situations are:
- The minor’s denial of guilt,
- A minor’s partial admission of guilty with an explanation for the minor’s activity, and
- Conditional admission of the minor’s guilt.
Potential Penalties for Minors Convicted of Drug or Paraphernalia Possession
Juvenile courts are substantially different from other court systems in that juvenile courts attempt to encourage minors to rehabilitate rather than penalize minors. In many cases, minors who are charged with drug possession can expect to be required to attend drug counseling. Minors might also be placed on probation after a drug possession charge and forced to comply with specific court ordered terms. The length of probation to which a minor is sentenced varies based upon the facts of the crime. Minors might also be sentenced to diversion, which is an informal type of probation that does not require probation officers. Minors might even be required to attend a rehabilitation program. Prison sentences are normally reserved for repeat offenders and the most severe cases. With this wide range of potential penalties, minors faced with a possession charge frequently find it essential to retain the services of seasoned legal counsel who can zealously defend against such charges.
Expungement of Records
In the state of Texas, minors might be able to expunge a conviction after turning twenty one by submitting an application for expungement to a court of law. While not all offenses are capable of being expunged, an experienced criminal defense attorney will know how to best help a minor who seeks to expunge a conviction.
How a Top Drug Offense Lawyer can Help
Many individuals who are faced with drug possession or paraphernalia charges find it critical to retain the services of a top Texas drug charge lawyer. The legal counsel at Wheeler Law Office has significant experience representing other individuals who have faced similar drug charges and knows what it takes to reach the best potential results when it comes to drug charges.
(image courtesy of Jane M Sawyer)