Although it is common in the news these days to hear reports of states and cities that are reducing penalties for drug use, these offenses remain a very serious charge in Wisconsin. Convicted defendants face significant jail time, fines, and lasting legal consequences that can affect their ability to get jobs or otherwise move on with their lives. If you are being investigated on suspicion of committing a drug offense or are facing possible charges, Reddin & Singer is prepared to aggressively protect your rights inside and outside the courtroom. Our criminal defense lawyers have a thorough understanding of Wisconsin’s laws on controlled substances, which make us a strong choice for Milwaukee residents in need of representation.Wisconsin Laws Related to Controlled Substances
While possession is the most common drug offense in Wisconsin, state law criminalizes all kinds of actions involving controlled substances. These include the cultivation of drugs, such as marijuana, the sale and manufacture of illegal substances, and the trafficking of drugs throughout the state and across borders. If an individual’s involvement with drugs extends across multiple states or is part of a large-scale operation, federal laws may also apply. For these reasons, any person charged with this type of offense should immediately seek the assistance of an experienced attorney.
The crime of drug possession can be charged against any individual who is found to have an illegal substance on his or her person or to otherwise be in control of some form of drugs. In Wisconsin, possession is charged as a misdemeanor for the first offense, and a conviction can result in jail time of up to six months and a fine of $1,000 or less. Subsequent possession charges result in stiffer penalties, including a prison sentence of up to three and a half years.
If a Wisconsin resident is caught selling controlled substances, or is in possession of such a significant amount of drugs that he or she is charged with possession with intent to distribute, the potential penalties can be more severe. The sale or distribution of drugs is a felony, and the amount of possible jail time varies depending on the amount of drugs discovered during the criminal investigation. At the lowest end of the spectrum, an individual found with 200 grams or less faces up to three and a half years in jail. However, for a person discovered with more than 10,000 grams, the resulting sentence can be up to 15 years in jail and a fine of $50,000.
People who are discovered with drug paraphernalia, rather than the actual substances, also can be charged with a crime under Wisconsin law. For example, if an individual is discovered with paraphernalia, and the evidence suggests that he or she intended to use it to consume drugs, this can be charged as a misdemeanor resulting in up to 30 days in jail. If the evidence suggests that that the defendant intended to distribute the paraphernalia to others, the penalty increases to up to 90 days of jail time.Seek the Advice of a Drug Offense Lawyer in Milwaukee
Prosecution for drug crimes remains a top priority for many law enforcement departments in Wisconsin, and investigations based on these charges can be aggressive and far-reaching. While it is important to keep dangerous chemicals off our streets and away from the public, overzealous efforts mean that innocent individuals are sometimes targeted wrongfully or excessively. If you or a loved one has recently been charged with a drug offense in or around Milwaukee, Reddin & Singer is here to assist you. Attorney William J. Reddin is a former state public defender with more than 30 years of experience, and he proudly serves clients throughout Wisconsin. For more information or to schedule a consultation, please contact us at (414) 271-6400 or through our online form.