Grand Junction Drug Paraphernalia Lawyers
Possession of Drug-Related Instruments Is a Crime in Colorado
Even if there’s no evidence of drugs, having tools associated with drug use is enough to get you arrested on the Western Slope.
There’s no such thing as a minor drug crime. A drug offense on your criminal record can destroy your reputation and make it harder to find work. Moreover, if you are charged with a different crime in the future, you face an enhanced sentence with a drug crime on your record.
At Peters & Nolan, LLC, we take the welfare of our Grand Junction clients very seriously, and we’ll do our best to help you avoid a conviction. Call us today at (970) 243-4357 to learn more.
What Constitutes Drug Paraphernalia?
According to Colorado Revised Statute § 18-18-428, the possession of drug paraphernalia is a drug petty crime offense. The statute reads, "a person commits possession of drug paraphernalia if he or she possesses drug paraphernalia and knows or reasonably should know that the drug paraphernalia could be used under circumstances in violation of the laws of this state."
Even if there is no evidence the defendant has narcotics in his or her possession, or consumed drugs using the paraphernalia, it is only necessary for the prosecution to show it’s likely the defendant knew it could be used to take drugs. This is an easy standard for the prosecution to meet, and makes it difficult to defend against these charges.
Examples of illegal drug paraphernalia in Colorado include the following:
- Hypodermic needles
- Meth pipes
- Coke spoons
- Purity analyzers
- Separation gins
- Drug containers
- Testing equipment
- Any other "equipment, products, and materials of any kind which are used, intended for use, or designed for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, concealing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance in violation of the laws of this state."
A drug petty crime offense carries a fine no greater than $100. A conviction may seem relatively harmless, but a drug crime on your permanent record can be detrimental, especially if you are charged with another crime in the future.
The Cannabis Exception
Since recreational cannabis is legal in Colorado, possession of cannabis-related paraphernalia is no longer a state crime. Equipment such as roach clips, bongs, and bowls are not banned. It should be noted some tools used with cannabis could be mistaken for other kinds of narcotic paraphernalia, and used by an arresting officer as "probable cause" to conduct a search or make an arrest. In such cases, the arrest and any subsequent charges could be fought on the grounds of unreasonable search and seizure.
What Defenses Are Available to Drug Paraphernalia Possession?
There are a number of possible defenses available to a person charged with drug paraphernalia possession in Grand Junction. First of all, we could show a defendant was unaware the equipment could be used with narcotics, or show there was another purpose for the equipment. For example, a diabetic who must take insulin shots would be allowed to have hypodermic needles and syringes in his possession.
Perhaps the equipment does not belong to you, you were unaware of its presence, or the search was illegally performed. There is also a special provision in the law that allows a person being searched by law enforcement to disclose the presence of a needle without being charged with possession, as long as he or she does so prior to the search.
Whatever the circumstances, the best way to defend yourself is with the help of an experienced Grand Junction criminal defense attorney. At Peters & Nolan, LLC, our legal team is dedicated to protecting clients from overly aggressive prosecution. We believe everyone is entitled to a professional defense, and we have a proven track record of successful outcomes. Contact us today at (970) 243-4357 to schedule a free consultation.
Peters & Nolan, LLC is your ideal source for high quality legal representation throughout the state of Colorado. Known for being personable and responsive, attorneys Andrew J. Peters and Andrew Nolan are aggressive trial lawyers with an excellent record of trying and settling cases in criminal defense, DUI/DWAI and personal injury.