Will there be automatic jail time for an 18 year old charged with selling ecstasy pills? 12 Answers as of January 28, 2011

My brother was arrested at school for having 8 ecstasy pills on him. I believe he is being charged with selling them. He turned 18 a month ago and has no previous offenses. He doesn't seem like the criminal type and is very cordial. Is there any chance he won't be sent to jail and if they do send him to jail how long would it be for?

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Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
He definitely needs a lawyer. Without a lawyer he will get probation and up to a year in county jail. Tell him to cut it out because the next bust could send him to state prison. Contact me. If in the Bay Area I can help and if not I can recommend someone good.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/28/2011
The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen
The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen | Robert L. Driessen
There is a possibility that he would not serve jail time. The best thing for him right now is to get an attorney to assist him.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/28/2011
Nelson & Lawless
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
Automatic? No. Possible? Of course.

If charged with a felony, you face potential years of prison time if convicted. As a misdemeanor, you face up to 6-12 months in jail. Youll know the actual charges you face when you appear for arraignment at your first court hearing. You wont know the outcome until you get there. Anything else is mere speculation.

However, effective plea-bargaining, using whatever defenses and sympathies you may have, could possibly keep you out of jail/prison, or at least dramatically reduce it, depending upon all the facts and evidence, priors and rap sheet, etc. Not exactly a do it yourself project in court for someone who does not know how to effectively represent himself against a professional prosecutor intending to convict you. If you don't know how to do these things, then hire an attorney that does, who will try to get a dismissal, diversion, reduction or other decent outcome through evidence suppression or other motions as applicable, plea bargain for you, or take it to trial. If serious about doing so, and if this is in SoCal courts, feel free to contact me. Ill be happy to help you use whatever defenses you may have.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/28/2011
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
Based on your post, I assume your brother turned 18 before he was caught selling the Ecstasy. If so, his case will be in superior adult court. A lack of record is a factor in his favor and could be a reason for a probation disposition. That is he could spend up to one year in the county jail. Depending on the circumstances associated with the arrest, he could face a state prison commitment However, if he is being charged (by the DA not what the police/sheriff arrested him for) with sales, there is probably information he has done this on prior occasions. There is some reason the cops found the pills on him or a place associated with him. He needs an attorney. He needs to say nothing else to any person other than his attorney.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/28/2011
Law Office of Joseph A. Katz
Law Office of Joseph A. Katz | Joseph A. Katz
No, there is no requirement that your brother spend time in jail. It is certainly a possibility. I cannot tell from your information if your brother was already eighteen years old when he was arrested. That is a very important piece of information. He had better think long and hard about admitting sales, if he has not already. I hope not. He could have purchased the eight pills for his personal use, and might be able to get a drug diversion program. Either way, he will at least be represented by the Public Defender's Office. He needs to be assertive, and be sure that he is thoroughly advised by his Attorney. There is a chance he will not be sent to jail, even if he is prosecuted as an adult. He will almost undoubtedly receive probation, and will probably be able to serve any jail sentence in a work release or electronic monitoring program. He should resist a plea to a sales charge at all costs if he is prosecuted as an adult. It will really, really affect him in a negative way for a long time.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/28/2011
    Law Offices of Philip P. De Luca
    Law Offices of Philip P. De Luca | Philip De Luca
    Well, the prosecution has to prove each and every element of the crime of "possession for sale" beyond reasonable doubt. Being caught with eight (8) Ecstasy pills is not necessarily dispositive of sales, necessarily, hence, the case may be very defensible, such that he might be able to get it reduced to "possession" with a skilled defense attorney, which could result in his eligibility for P.C. 1000 Drug Diversion or other forms of creative plea bargain. If he is convicted for "possession for sale", there is a definite possibility he may serve time for the offense, despite no history of priors. Again, skilled defense representation is needed.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
    Tomas M. Flores, Esq.
    Tomas M. Flores, Esq. | Tomas M. Flores
    The short answer is no. A charge doesn't automatically translate into jail time. Without knowing all of the facts, I can't tell you exactly what to expect. However, a good criminal attorney can best limit this young man's jail exposure.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
    Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
    All criminal cases are fact driven. Depending on the facts and his attorney it is possible for him not to go to jail.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    That depends on a lot of factors. For instance, the strenth of the Prosecutors case, the evidence against him, etc. I would recommend having your brother contact an attorney to speak in more detail about his scenario.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
    Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy
    Law Offices of Ryan P. Murphy | Ryan P. Murphy
    Your answer depends on the county, judge, prosecutor and his attorney. I would need more facts to fully evaluate your brother's situation. Should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact my office at your earliest convenience.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
    Steven Mandell
    Steven Mandell | Law Offices of Steven Mandell
    Though a jail sentence is common for sales of drugs,there is a chance that if his case is handled properly he won't have to do any jail time. Everything depends on the totality of the circumstances, including the skills of his lawyer. Try to hire an experienced criminal lawyer who handles drug cases. If you'd like to consult with me, please don't hesitate to contact me. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/28/2011
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