i got caught with marijuana?

Hey guys, i recently got caught with marijuana in the state of Hawaii, and i feel depressed as fxckkk. Mainly because i do not know what to expect as this has never happened to me before.

Me and two of my friends were hot boxing my car when we suddenly saw flashing lights behind us. At this point i am stoned out of my mind. 2 officers come up to my window and start asking questions. i do not really remember what they were asking as i was too stoned to function. what i do remember is that they saw marijuana crumbs on my pants and they saw a finished joint in my cup holder. At this point i do not know what to do and my 2 other friends are silent as well. long story short they took the rest of our weed (1 gram or maybe less) and confiscated our pipe. The cops gave all 3 of us citations for a court summoning. We were not arrested or taken to the station and we were free to go. We were all charged with (Promoting a detrimental drug to the 3rd degree, petty misdemeanor). I am scared and depressed out of my mind because of this. Is this a really big deal? should i be getting a lawyer or would that be blowing it out of proportion? what should i expect when i go to my court appearance? will i be doing jail time? What are the consequences for this usually? and will this be going on my permanent record?

Sorry for all of these questions. im just really worried as this is my first offense i have ever experienced. I am in the state of Hawaii. Thank you in advanced.:confused:

Moderator Action

Welcome to the SDMB, andyseesaw.

This involves legal issues, and questions involving legal opinions belong in our In My Humble Opinion forum. I will move the thread for you.

As the forum name implies, any responses you receive are just the opinions of some online folks and should not be taken as the equivalent of professional legal advice.

Moving thread from General Questions to In My Humble Opinion.

This is from a lawyer’s web page, but I think it is accurate:

Note that it says “up to”. Jail time is a possibility, but it’s not guaranteed.

If convicted, you will have a “permanent record” of a petty misdemeanor. Even without jail time, this will likely cause you some issues for the rest of your life. You are required to disclose it on things like job applications, and there are companies that will not hire you because of it. You may find difficulty in obtaining a lease for an apartment from some companies as well.

do you think it is likely they will convict me for something like this because it is my first charge?

I think you should get a lawyer instead of asking people on an anonymous message board.

GET A LAWYER, ferchrissakes. This is why God made lawyers.

Cite?

Pretty sure it was the other guy.

If they have evidence that you committed a crime, it is likely you will be convicted. They may cut you some slack on sentencing as a first offender, such as giving you probation instead of jail. But unless you can suppress or discredit their evidence, conviction is likely.

Get a lawyer. But yeah, it sounds like you are guilty and they have a lot of evidence of that, so a conviction seems likely. But I am not a lawyer.

Was the car moving? We’re you charged with anything related to operating a vehicle under the influence?

Also, despite the name of this board, we have no special info or advice about issues related to marijuana.

Naw, God did it because he didn’t want Satan to look too evil.

I have to hand it to the OP.

Despite this being his first post, he managed to accomplish something that even seasoned posters have screwed up. *He told us what state he is in when asking a legal question. *

Hold your head high Andy. Hold it high.

From the Hawaiian statutes:

Unless you can get the charges dismissed on some sort of technicality, I think they have you dead to rights.

I’m not sure what a lawyer would do for you, except take your money.

You won’t be doing any jail time unless you walk into that courtroom and tell the judge to kiss your hairy ass.

Most likely a fine, and possible some probation. Heck, being a first time offender, you might even get deferred adjudication. Which would be a big win for you.

As far as jobs go, unless you’re trying to land some sort of high security job, your record shouldn’t be a problem, as most applications ask if you’ve ever been convicted of a FELONY (which isn’t you), I don’t think I’ve ever seen an application that inquired about misdemeanors.

A lawyer could examine the details of the citation to see if there are any grounds for dismissal. We don’t have all the information, and it is possible to get the charges kicked before ever going to trial. A lawyer could probably tell him what his chances are with just a consultation. Worth a small fee, if you ask me.

Yeah, get a lawyer. Maybe a local law school has a program where you can talk to law students who are supervised by real lawyers for free.

As a person who was arrested for for possession of marijuana almost 20 years ago in Texas, who did not get a lawyer, I advise you to get a lawyer.

The fees/fines I racked up from my 6 months probation were more than double the maximum fine listed above. At least talk to a lawyer and ask them what they think they could do if they went to trial.

You pay, you get a better deal. That’s the way the system works. You walk in alone or with a public defender, you get a shittier deal.

A lawyer will tell you that for $700-$1000, he can get the charges dropped after the completion of a treatment program. In a backhanded way, paying a lawyer is considered part of your punishment.

Definitely get a lawyer, maybe he can help you plea down to some non-criminal offense. That would be worth whatever the few thousand he might charge (just guessing here, no idea how much Hawaiian lawyers cost).

Not sure if this makes you feel better, here was a teacher in Hawaii who was caught in almost the same manner: http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2007/Mar/09/ln/FP703090359.html She pleaded no contest and they dropped the case after she paid a fine and made it through probation.

It does look like she lost her job as a teacher though: http://archives.starbulletin.com/content/2_Mililani_Middle_School_teachers_terminated_for_marijuana_incident