Effects of Penalties for DC Cocaine Offenses

The effects of penalties for DC cocaine offenses can follow a person for the rest of their life. Aside from any jail time and fines, they can make it extremely difficult for someone to find a job or housing and can make the naturalization process almost impossible.

In order to minimize the effects of these penalties as much as possible, it is critical to contact an aggressive cocaine lawyer as soon as possible. The sooner an attorney is on the case, the sooner they can begin fighting to protect your rights and interests.

How Cocaine Penalties Can Impact a Person’s Life

Regardless of whether a person faces charges of misdemeanor possession of cocaine or felony-level cocaine offenses such as possession with intent to distribute, it is important to not underestimate the seriousness of the charge. Even misdemeanor offenses carry the possibility of up to 180 days of jail. The charge could also carry the possibility of probationary periods, court costs, treatment requirements, community service, and a permanent criminal record. Further, in some situations, an individual convicted of misdemeanor cocaine possession charges could face consequences for their job, especially if their job requires background checks, a government security clearance, or frequent drug testing.

Regardless of whether someone is convicted of either a misdemeanor or felony drug offense, they could be deemed ineligible for specific benefits such as Section 8 housing vouchers and SNAP benefits. Non-US citizens may also face consequences to their immigration status including the possibility of deportation, a denial of a naturalization request, da denial of re-entry into the United States.

If someone faces a felony charge of possession with intent to distribute cocaine, the consequences could be even more severe. They may be denied certain kinds of jobs, especially jobs with the federal government or jobs working with vulnerable people such as children or the elderly. A person with a felony record could also face the possibility of months or years in prison. The severity of these potential repercussions makes working with an experienced attorney crucial.

How Can Someone in DC Minimize these Consequences?

A person charged with simple possession of cocaine may, in some situations, have that arrest expunged from their criminal record. However, Washington, DC’s expungement rules are extremely complicated.

Under DC law, a person convicted on felony charges of distribution of cocaine or possession with intent to distribute cocaine is not eligible for expungement. However, if someone was arrested but not convicted of possession with intent to distribute or distribution, they may be eligible to have their record expunged. If an individual wants to expunge a cocaine possession charge, it is helpful to discuss their specific situation with a criminal defense lawyer who understands the DC expungement rules and who can guide them through the process.

Discuss the Effects of Penalties for DC Cocaine Offenses with an Attorney

The effects of penalties for DC cocaine offenses can last long after a sentence is completed. Between the potential loss of civil rights and the creation of a permanent record, these negative consequences can follow a person throughout the rest of their life. This makes contacting an experienced attorney as soon as possible critical. If you are facing criminal charges for cocaine, call today to set up a free consultation.