Michigan has some of the toughest drug laws in the nation. In our state, you can be convicted of a drug crime for sale, possession, possession of paraphernalia, cultivation, distribution, and even drug use. You can also be charged with maintaining a drug house or a drug vehicle if you own a vehicle or structure where drug use takes place.
However, does that mean being around people who are using drugs is illegal?
Technically speaking, no. Michigan doesn’t have any laws on the books that forbid a person from being present when illegal drugs are being used. However, that comes with some caveats.
For instance, if you’re hosting a party where multiple people are using drugs, you may be charged with maintaining a drug house. That particular charge is a high court misdemeanor and comes with a two-year prison sentence. If you’re at a gathering where illegal drug use is taking place and your belongings are used to facilitate drug use (e.g. your rolling papers, syringes, marijuana pipe, or razor blades), then you may be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia. Paraphernalia possession is a misdemeanor charge that comes with 90 days in jail and fines up to $5,000.
Note that in either of these cases, you could be 100% sober and still be found guilty of a crime. Using, selling, or even possessing drugs isn’t necessary in order to be charged with a drug crime in Michigan.
What If It’s Not My House & Not My Stuff?
Let’s say someone visits a party where illegal drug use is taking place. It’s not their home and it’s not their property used to facilitate illegal drug use. Can they still get in trouble? Most likely not, but that’s only a likelihood. Remember, police officers only need probable cause to search your car or person.
Realistically, law enforcement officers might use your presence at a party where illegal drug use took place to search your car or backpack or whatever you have on you. If you have any paraphernalia or drugs in your car, you’ll be in trouble.
But if you’re not a drug user, have no drug paraphernalia, and are only visiting a place where drug use took place? No, you haven’t technically broken any laws. Still, if prosecutors begin putting pressure on you, it’s vital that you get a Farmington Hills drug crime lawyer as soon as possible. Like defense attorneys like to say, lawyers aren’t for guilty people—they’re for people who want to stay out of jail.
Speak with me, Daniel D. Hajji, Attorney at Law, in a free consultation about your charges as soon as possible. Call (248) 599-0054 today!