Different Charges, Different Penalties
In Indiana, drug laws categorize offenses mainly under two predominant charges: drug possession and intent to distribute. Let's delve into understanding what each charge entails and the penalties they carry.
Drug Possession in Indiana
In the simplest terms, 'drug possession' refers to having control over an illegal substance for personal use. In Indiana, the severity of penalties for drug possession largely depends on the type of drug, its classification under the Controlled Substances Act, and the quantity found. For instance, possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana might result in a misdemeanor, carrying a sentence of up to a year in jail and a fine up to $5,000.
Intent to Distribute in Indiana
On the other hand, 'intent to distribute' charges apply when an individual possesses a drug with the plan to sell or distribute it. This charge often carries stiffer penalties than simple possession, as it contributes to the larger issue of drug trafficking. For example, being caught with over 10 grams of cocaine with an intention to distribute can lead to a felony charge, carrying a potential penalty of 2 to 12 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.
Penalties: Possession vs Intent to Distribute
The distinction between drug possession and intent to distribute has significant implications for the penalties one might face. While both charges are serious, the consequences of intent to distribute are often much more severe due to its potential societal impact. It's important to note that Indiana courts consider previous convictions and the proximity to a school or park in determining sentences.
Work With a Team of Criminal Defense Attorneys
Understanding these laws and their consequences is vital. If you or someone you know is facing drug charges in Indiana, seeking legal counsel from a knowledgeable attorney can help ensure a fair and just outcome.