Arizona’s Marijuana Possession Laws
In Arizona person may be arrested for Marijuana Possession under ARS § 13-3405. In order to prosecute these charges, the state must prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” the possessor knew or had reason to know, that the Marijuana was in their possession. If the person knowingly possessed the Marijuana, they may be charged with Felony. The severity of the charges and punishment depend on the following:
- Nature of the charges;
- Quantity of drug found in their possession;
- Whether or not it exceed the statutory “Threshold Amount”;
- Intended use for the Marijuana (personal use or sale);
- First offense v. repeat offense;
- Other criminal offenses associated with the charges.
Defenses commonly used for Marijuana Possession Charges
Even if a person is arrested for charged with a crime, they still have constitutional rights afforded to them under State Law; the Arizona State and United States Constitution. A person has the right to an attorney to defend their charges, following an arrest. Common challenges to Marijuana possession charges may include but are not limited to:
- Unlawful search and Seizure;
- Lack of lawful warrant to make an arrest;
- “No probable cause for arrest”;
- Police Entrapment;
- Wrong person arrested;
- Burden of Proof “Beyond reasonable doubt” not satisfied;
- The defendant had no “knowledge” that they possessed the Marijuana; n;
- Miranda Rights were violated, or not read;
- Other violations of Constitutional Rights
Marijuana Possession Attorney in Tempe AZ
Arizona calls for mandatory prison time, for Marijuana convictions that exceed the statutory “Threshold Amount” of 2 pounds. When amounts exceed the “Threshold” limit, police assume the Marijuana is in a person’s possession for purpose outside their own use, such as sales or distribution. In those cases, the charges and penalties are extremely severe. Even lesser amounts however, will expose a person to extended jail or prison time; probation and community service; mandatory counseling, screening, or treatment; fines; fees; and assessments.
If you face any type of Marijuana or illegal drug related charges, you should consult a qualified Arizona criminal defense attorney in the jurisdiction where you were arrested or received charges. If retained, they will defend your charges; determine if there are justified defenses that may be used to challenge the charges; and work to help you avoid jail or prison; a dismissal of charges or other favorable resolution in your case.