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3 Types of Drug Charges in Denver
/ 29 June, 2022

There’s no question that Colorado is laxer when it comes to drug laws than other states. While this is true, there are still laws that must be followed.

If at any time you are arrested and charged with drug crimes in Denver, you can count on the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani to help you. We can review your charges and help ensure you receive the quality legal protections and representation that you deserve.

Basic Drug Crimes in Colorado

In Denver, there are several drug offenses that you may be arrested and charged with. These include:

1. Drug Use

In most situations, the use of a controlled substance in Denver (and the entire state of Colorado), is considered a level II misdemeanor. The one exception to this level of drug charge is if you take a prescription medication without having a valid prescription or not as prescribed. It also applies to cases of using medical marijuana or any marijuana outside of your home (or the home of someone else).

2. Drug Possession

It’s legal to possess up to an ounce of marijuana for recreational use in Colorado if you are over the age of 21. However, most other controlled substances are illegal.

In Denver, you can be charged with three different types or levels of possession. These include:

  • True possession, which means you are physically in possession of the drugs.
  • Constructive possession, which is when you have control over the drugs.
  • Joint possession is if you share ownership or control of the drugs with someone else.

The possession of controlled substances beyond what is considered legal according to the law will result in you facing criminal charges. However, the level of the crime depends on what you have and how much of it you have.

3. Selling or Manufacturing Drugs

Selling or manufacturing drugs can be considered a misdemeanor or felony. What you are charged with is dependent on the following:

  • Your past criminal activity or charges
  • The amount you are accused of selling or making
  • The type of drug you are accused of selling or making

Understanding Drug Felonies in Denver

Usually, if you are charged with a felony related to drugs in Denver, it will be related to the manufacturing or selling of narcotics. In Colorado, you will find there are four different levels of felony drug charges. These include:

Level I Drug Felonies

This is considered the most serious drug felony that you can be charged with in Denver. This is the charge that you will face if you are caught with the following:

  • Selling over 50 pounds of marijuana
  • Selling marijuana to someone under 18 (a minor) in over 2.5 pounds if the adult is a minimum of two years older than the buyer
  • Selling a Schedule I or II drugs to a minor if the adult dealer is at least two years older than them
  • Selling a controlled substance, which includes more than 225 grams of a Schedule I or Schedule II drug, or more than 112 grams of methamphetamine, ketamine, or heroin

The penalties involved with a Level I drug felony can include fines that go up to $1 million and up to 32 jails in prison. If there are any type of aggravating factors involved in the situation, then the minimum sentence that applies to the charge is 12 years. The aggravating factors include the following:

  • Being out on bond for a different felony
  • After escaping from prison
  • Being confined for a different felony
  • Being on parole or probation for a different felony

Level II Drug-Related Felonies

The next level of felony drug charges is Level II. You will face this type of drug charge if you are caught selling over 14 grams of any Schedule I or Schedule II substance, if you sell or distribute materials that are used for manufacturing any controlled substances, or if you have materials for producing methamphetamine or amphetamine. If you’re charged with a felony in Denver, you’ll need even more staunch representation.

Let Our Legal Team Help with Your Denver Drug Charges

If you are facing drug charges in Denver, it’s important to get in touch with us at the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani. We will review the facts of your case and provide you with a strong defense for the charges you are facing.

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What Not to Do if Pulled Over in Denver?

What Are the Costs Associated with a DUI in Denver?

What Not to Do if Pulled Over in Denver?
/ 17 June, 2022

There’s no question that if you are pulled over in Denver, it can be a confusing and stressful situation. When you are under stress, it isn’t uncommon to make mistakes. However, making a mistake when being pulled over can lead to serious consequences.

Our legal team at the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani is ready to help if you do find yourself in trouble with the law, but we also know that avoiding these types of situations is best. Some of the things you should never do when pulled over by the police in Denver can be found here.

Being informed is the best way to protect yourself and your rights. Keep this in mind to ensure that you know what to do and what to avoid.

Don’t Panic

When you see red and blue lights flashing behind you, you need to stay calm and avoid panicking. Usually, police officers are going to be on high alert when they pull someone over. Because of this, you need to stay calm and be sure to cooperate with the officer. Remember, the police have a job to do – enforce the law. If you panic, it will make the situation tenser and can lead to undesirable outcomes.

Don’t Take Your Seatbelt Off

You should wait until the officer is at your window and can see what you are doing to reach down to remove your seatbelt. While it may be a habit to take off the belt when you stop your car, if you remove it before the officer comes up to talk to you, they may assume that you were not wearing one at all. In this case, they are going to issue you a ticket for this, too.

Don’t Talk Unless the Officer Speaks to You

You should always wait to say anything until the officer lets you know why you have been pulled over. Be sure you give them time to approach your vehicle and let them take the lead when it comes to a conversation. If you talk first, it may make you seem guilty or make it look like you are being combative. These are two things that may lead to more trouble in the long run.

Don’t Argue with the Officer

Even if you don’t agree with the allegations the officer has made against you, it is important to be compliant and obedient to their requests. This is going to help the entire situation move along more smoothly.

Don’t get angry or lose your temper. If you do, this is going to be included in the officer’s notes. If you go to court to make a plea for a reduced charge or lesser sentence, the judge or prosecuting attorney will ask the attorney to let them know more about why you were stopped. If the police officer reports to them that you said something inappropriate or that you were hostile, then it may be difficult to achieve a positive outcome for your case.

Also, staying kind and upbeat may help you avoid getting a ticket – while this isn’t guaranteed, it can’t hurt.

Don’t Reach for Anything Until You Tell the Officer What You Are Doing

If a police officer is coming up to your vehicle and you make a sudden movement, it may be seen as a threat. This means that you should never reach for something until the officer requests it – this includes your license or registration.

If you want to reach for something, let the officer know what you are doing first. Also, only roll your window down a few inches so that you can pass your license and insurance card to the officer.

You need to also keep your hands visible so that the officer can see them clearly. Sometimes, police are nervous when they come up to a vehicle. They don’t know what the intentions are of the occupants or if they have any weapons on them. Because of this, you should make sure that you always keep your hands visible.

Let Our Legal Team Help if You Are Facing Criminal Charges

Being pulled over can be a difficult and stressful situation. While this is true, our legal team is ready to help. Contact us today for more information. We can review your case and situation and help build a strong defense strategy. Our goal is to provide aggressive Denver legal defense for our clients to help them with their legal situation.

While we can’t make any guarantees, you can count on us to use all our resources and abilities to help you in your time of need.

What Are the Costs Associated with a DUI in Denver?
/ 16 June, 2022

In the state of Colorado, being convicted of DUI can be expensive. Between the costs of an attorney and going to court, along with the class fees, penalties, and other related costs, the total amount you must spend for a DUI conviction is significant.

Some say this is for a good reason. With drunk drivers being at-fault for thousands of deaths every year, the penalties seem to fit the crime.

To help reduce the incidences of drunk driving, many law enforcement agencies have increased the costs of a DUI conviction. Because of this, you may wonder – what is the actual cost of a DUI? Is it just a few hundred, a few thousand, or more?

The answer to this is – it depends. The fact is each case is unique and impacts the true cost of the DUI. Regardless of the facts of your case, you can rest assured that it’s going to put a rather significant dent in your wallet.

Here you can learn more about the factors that impact the cost of your DUI and why hiring an experienced attorney from the Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani is a smart move.

The Cost of a First DUI in Denver

What you must pay to resolve your DUI situation and cover all the fees and obligations varies. If you are charged with DUI for the first time and don’t have much experience with the criminal justice system or know how to defend yourself, you may be confused about what to do next. However, our legal team is here to help.

The first time you are arrested for DUI in Denver, you can expect to pay (on average) $7,000 if you are convicted. Some people wonder why this is the case since the court fines for DUI are only $1,000 max. The reason that the cost of this is so high is that there are many other expenses and costs related to a DUI charge than just the fine you must pay when convicted.

The costs will start to add up even before you go to trial because you must pay things like bail costs, vehicle storage fees, towing fees, and more. If you plan to contest the suspension of your license before you go to trial, there are fees associated with that, too, which include a reinstatement fee for your license.

The true cost of your DUI will increase if you are convicted. Even first-time DUI offenders who don’t have a past criminal history may have to pay supervision fees for probation, a fee for law enforcement help, fees to the victim, alcohol and drug treatment, a PDD (persistent drunk driver) surcharge, and an increase in your insurance premiums.

The Cost of a Second DUI in Denver

If you have been arrested for a second DUI in Denver, the costs will likely be much more than a first DUI conviction. However, this is not always the cost since the initial fines are much higher. Instead, the amount of community service, education, and jail time will all contribute to the higher cost of a second DUI charge and conviction.

With second and subsequent DUIs, you will have to pay all the same pre-trial costs that you did with your initial DUI again. Car storage, DMV hearing costs, bail, license reinstatement, towing, and booking will still add costs to your charge. If convicted, you will also pay additional fees related to the increased consequences. For example, you must pay for someone to install and calibrate an ignition interlock device.

With all “hidden” fees accounted for, the average amount you will pay for being charged and convicted of a second DUI is around $10,000. If you experience a third, fourth, or more DUI, the fees will likely exceed $15,000. There are a few reasons that this will happen. The court costs are much higher, the fee for a conviction is higher, and there are more conditions related to sentencing like longer alcohol or drug course. Your bail will likely be higher, as well.

Tips to Reduce the Cost of Your Denver DUI Charge

As you can see from the information above, even a first-time DUI conviction is expensive. If you plead guilty or go to trial without legal representation, it may cost you up to $13,000 or more.

One of the best ways to reduce the cost associated with DUI charges in Denver is to avoid being convicted. If you are convicted, then you will have to pay all these fees (in most cases) or more.

One of the best ways to limit the overall cost of a drunk driving charge is for you to avoid being convicted. If you happen to be convicted, then you must pay most of these things. Make sure you don’t plead guilty mindlessly for a DUI or some other criminal offense. Our legal team is here to help and provide you with the representation that you need to reduce the cost of your DUI charge and conviction.

We offer each client a free consultation to discuss their case and needs. Our Denver drunk driving defense lawyer will listen to your situation, review what you have been charged with, gather evidence, and help you figure out what you can do to protect your financial interests and legal rights. By hiring our DUI defense lawyer, you can save several thousand dollars or more.

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