Many people have prescriptions for certain controlled substances, but a person without an official prescription could face criminal charges for possessing or distributing these medications. Prescription drug charges can carry severe legal consequences, and a person who has been accused of abusing controlled medications may require legal assistance to minimize the potential penalties. A Bloomington prescription drug lawyer could examine a person’s unique situation and help them cast doubt on the prosecution’s case.
Crimes involving prescription drugs are treated similarly to other controlled substance offenses under Minnesota law. These particular crimes are almost always felony-level offenses, depending on the quantitative amount and nature of the substance.
Law enforcement handles these crimes with extreme care because prescription drugs are often deadly when abused for long periods of time. A person who gets access to prescription pain killers or opiates and abuses them will likely become addicted and could easily overdose. The danger of prescription drugs means that offenses involving these substances are prosecuted intensely, and an accused person may need a Bloomington attorney’s help to fight back against their charges.
If a person is prescribed medication by a doctor, it is important to carry the proof of prescription with the drugs at all times. Someone with a prescription must carry their medication in the proper bottle with the official label on it. Failing to do so could lead to prescription drug charges and a criminal arrest, and a person may receive a label violation even if they prove their prescription to law enforcement later on.
If a person is found in possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, an arrest is up to the discretion of law enforcement. For example, if the person has hundreds of pills in a plastic bag, they will likely be arrested. If they have a couple pills in their pocket, the officer may believe that is their prescription.
If a person accused of a prescription drug crime cannot immediately produce proof of their prescription, an investigation and a potential criminal case will typically result. The substance in question will be chemically analyzed to determine that it is in fact illegal, and its schedule will be noted to determine the severity of the charges.
Fortunately, Minnesota maintains a database of medications prescribed to its residents. Law enforcement can issue a search warrant to examine that database and see all of the prescriptions that the defendant has been issued and when they were prescribed. This is one of the clearest forms of evidence that can be utilized in a prescription drug case. If a defendant has never been given authorized access to a substance, their prescription drug possession was unlawful. However, if they were prescribed the medication previously, they may have been in lawful possession of the seized drug.
A lawyer in Bloomington could undertake their own investigation of the case to ensure the illegality of the prescription drug and prevent law enforcement from making hasty judgements without a full examination of all of the available evidence.
It is important to enter a prescription drug case with legal representation, as an attorney could look for issues and weak points in the prosecution’s arguments and ensure that your rights are protected throughout every step of the process. These allegations can seem daunting, but a Bloomington prescription drug lawyer could help you create compelling defense strategies to dismiss your charges. Call today to schedule a consultation and learn more about your next steps.