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Drug use, criminal behavior, prison or the alternative

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2019 | Drug Charges

Many addicts begin taking drugs at an early age simply because they are available. They can get them. Other people become addicted to the prescription doctors give them for a medical condition.

In the state of New Hampshire, chemical addiction is often intertwined with a criminal charge. In fact, there are three main types of criminal behavior associated with drug abuse.

Criminal activity

Here are the three main types of drug-related criminal activity: 1) use-related, 2) economic-related and 3) systems-related. The first type refers to a crime committed under the influence of the drugs someone has taken. The second is a crime someone commits to acquire the money needed to continue an addiction. The third refers to the manufacture, selling and transporting of drugs, the involvement of drug rings and the resulting violence, such as turf wars.

Severe sentences

In New Hampshire, someone convicted of possessing a controlled drug, such as heroin, cocaine, LSD or methamphetamine, will face up to three years in state prison. If convicted of manufacturing, selling, possessing with the intent to sell or transporting a half ounce of cocaine, one gram or more of heroin, less than 100 milligrams of LSD or an ounce or more of meth, the court can impose a sentence of 10 to 20 years at the state prison. These are examples of the kinds of sentences a judge can hand down for a drug offense.

An alternative to prison

Studies show that nationwide, 60% of people arrested for various reasons test positive for illegal drugs. In New Hampshire, it is not uncommon for a drug charge to accompany a criminal charge like theft, an example of an economic-related criminal activity. While prison appears to be the next step following a conviction, the defense may be able to work out an alternative. The court may approve professional treatment for addiction in place of conviction if the circumstances permit. In certain criminal cases, treatment for chemical dependency is found to be a more effective solution than incarceration.