Disclaimer: Here at Flaherty & Merrifield, we do not represent snitches. If you are working with the cops, or you’re thinking about doing so, we are definitely not the Firm for you. We will not help you get other people in trouble.
There is no doubt that in the past couple years, heroin and opioid usage has skyrocketed in Okaloosa County. This follows the national trend of Opioid abuse doubling in the last ten years according to the Centers for Disease Control.
My name is Tim Flaherty. I have been defending drug cases in Okaloosa County since 2001. My partner, Brandy Merrifield, has worked with me since 2007. What we are seeing right now with Opioid abuse is unlike anything we’ve ever seen. We want to do our part to help. As long as Okaloosa County continues to treat this problem with incarceration and prosecution instead of treatment, we will be offering significantly reduced legal fees for anyone charged with Heroin or Opioid possession. We are ready to put our experience to work in helping our clients stay out of prison and get help for their addiction.
If you have been charged with a drug crime, call the Okaloosa County heroin or opioid possession lawyers with Flaherty & Merrifield at (850) 243-6097 and let us help you.
What is the penalty for Possession of Heroin?
This charge is a third degree felony, which means that the maximum penalty is 5 years in prison, a felony conviction on your record, and up to a $5000.00 fine.
Also, according to Florida Statute 322.055, your driver’s license can be suspended for 6 months if you are convicted of Possession of Heroin or Opioids.
How will an attorney defend a Possession of Heroin charge?
As with any case we defend, we will start by examining the evidence that the State has against you. We do this to determine if there is a valid, legal basis to attack the lawfulness of the traffic stop, search of your property or person, or of any statements you may have made to the police.
Some other possible defenses to a Possession of Heroin or Opioids case include:
If you were in an area where drugs were found, but you weren’t in actual possession of the drugs, the State will be required to prove that you exercised dominion and control of the substance before you can be convicted. For example, if you were riding in a car with other people and the police found drugs in the car, the State has to prove that you knew drugs were in the car.
This is all too common in Heroin and Opioid cases. According to Florida Statute 893.21, “A person who experiences a drug-related overdose and is in need of medical assistance may not be charged, prosecuted, or penalized for possession if the evidence for possession was obtained as a result of the overdose and the need for medical assistance.”
If someone has a drug problem, it does them no good to be locked up. It also does society no good either. Rather than settle for a punitive punishment for my clients, we will explore treatment alternatives that can hopefully put someone on the path to recovery rather than on a path to repeated trips back to jail.
This is a program that is sometimes offered to first time offenders. Diversion allows the defendant to complete a set of conditions and in return for doing so, guarantees a complete dismissal of all charges.
There are of course other defense options that may or may not apply to your case. When we meet to talk about your case, we will be happy to review the options that are available to you. The most important thing to remember is that we will explore ANY option that keeps our client out of jail and keeps a felony off their record.
Call a Possession of Heroin or Opioids Attorney
If you have been charged with Possession of Heroin or Opioids in Okaloosa County, call Flaherty & Merrifield at (850) 243-6097 for a free, confidential case review.