January 23, 2024 By Paul Wallin

Drug Offenses in Riverside: Common Charges and Defenses

Welcome to this overview of drug offenses in Riverside! In this section, we will explore the laws and penalties surrounding drug offenses in Riverside.

Firstly, it’s important to note that California has some of the strictest drug laws in the United States. This is due to the state’s “Three Strikes” law, which imposes harsher penalties on repeat offenders. Additionally, California’s Proposition 47, passed in 2014, reduced some drug possession felonies to misdemeanors.


 Despite these recent changes, drug offenses in California are still taken very seriously. Possession of any type of illegal drug is considered a misdemeanor and can result in up to one year in county jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.

The penalties become more severe for possession with intent to sell, which is considered a felony. This can result in up to three years in state prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.

For more serious drug offenses such as trafficking or manufacturing, the penalties can be even harsher. Trafficking large quantities of drugs can result in up to nine years in state prison and/or a fine of up to $50,000.

It’s also important to note that California has mandatory minimum sentences for certain drug offenses, meaning judges cannot reduce the sentence below a specific length. This is another factor contributing to the strict drug laws in the state.

In addition to these penalties, individuals convicted of drug offenses may also face mandatory drug treatment programs and probation.

Common Offenses

 We find a variety of common drug offenses that law enforcement frequently encounters. Among these offenses, possession of methamphetamines, cocaine, and heroin stands out due to higher incidence rates. Furthermore, there has been an alarming increase in prescription drug abuse, with painkillers such as Oxycodone and Hydrocodone being the most frequently abused substances. Illegal marijuana cultivation, though less frequent, still remains a notable issue. Notably, the penalties for these offenses vary significantly based on the type and quantity of drugs involved, whether the offense involves possession or trafficking, among other factors. It’s important to remember that drug offenses are taken seriously in California, and the penalties can have a significant impact on an individual’s life. So, it’s crucial to educate oneself about the laws and consequences surrounding drug offenses, both in California and nationwide. 

Common Defenses

 While facing a drug offense charge in California can be daunting, it’s essential to remember that there are several defenses that can be used depending on the specifics of the case.

  1. Unlawful Search and Seizure: One common defense is to challenge the legality of the search that led to the discovery of the drugs. Under the Fourth Amendment, you have the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. If the drugs were found as a result of an unlawful search and seizure, the evidence may be thrown out.
  2. Lack of Possession: Another defense is to argue that you were not in actual possession of the drugs. This might be the case if the drugs were found in a place accessible to several people.
  3. Drugs were not yours: A similar defense to lack of possession is to argue that the drugs belonged to someone else. This could be a viable defense if the drugs were found in a shared space, like a communal living area.
  4. Entrapment: In some cases, people are coerced or tricked into committing drug offenses that they would not have committed otherwise. This is known as entrapment and can be used as a defense in a court of law.
  5. Lack of Knowledge: If you can prove that you were unaware of the presence of drugs, you may be able to use lack of knowledge as a defense.

Remember, each case is unique, and the success of a defense strategy relies heavily on the specifics of the case and the skill of the defense attorney. Always consult with a knowledgeable attorney if you’re facing drug offense charges in California. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have over 40 years of experience representing cases like yours. Call our office today!

Contact Wallin & Klarich Today 

If you or a loved one are facing drug charges, you need an aggressive defense attorney to fight for your freedom. With 40+ years of experience, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have helped thousands of clients win their cases or get their charges reduced to a lesser degree. We know the most effective defenses to argue on your behalf, and we will do everything in our power to help you achieve the best possible result in your case. 

You may not be aware of all your options. Calling our office costs you nothing, but picking up the phone could be the difference between years in prison and years of freedom. Let our skilled attorneys examine your case to find the best way to avoid prison.Discover how our team can assist you. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.

AUTHOR: Paul Wallin

Paul Wallin is one of the most highly respected attorneys in Southern California. His vast experience, zealous advocacy for his clients and extensive knowledge of many areas of the law make Mr. Wallin a premiere Southern California attorney. Mr. Wallin founded Wallin & Klarich in 1981. As the senior partner of Wallin & Klarich, Mr. Wallin has been successfully representing clients for more than 30 years. Clients come to him for help in matters involving assault and battery, drug crimes, juvenile crimes, theft, manslaughter, sex offenses, murder, violent crimes, misdemeanors and felonies. Mr. Wallin also helps clients with family law matters such as divorce and child custody.

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