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Missing Lab Report Results in Virginia Marijuana Dismissal

Not long ago, the Roanoke criminal defense attorneys at Copenhaver, Ellet & Derrico assisted a man after an arrest and subsequent marijuana charge put him in a very difficult situation. Essentially, the man learned that if convicted of this marijuana possession charge, he may be subjected to some serious and long-lasting penalties including hefty fines, license suspension, and even time behind bars in addition to having a permanent criminal record. This individual became understandably concerned about such life-altering ramifications and in hopes of avoiding or lessening the impact of a marijuana conviction, he decided to speak to a Virginia defense lawyer with the necessary skills to effectively handle a marijuana offense.

With an exhaustive knowledge of Virginia’s criminal process regarding drug charges, attorney Michelle Derrico knew that the state’s crime labs are often overworked, understaffed, and in a case involving marijuana, special requests are needed for a proper analysis. If a lab test of suspected marijuana is requested to confirm authenticity, police officers are mandated to provide the accused individuals with an information sheet, explaining the process. It quickly became apparent to attorney Derrico that the officers did not provide her client with this information sheet, and furthermore, failed to perform the laboratory test on what they claimed to be marijuana. Due in large part to attorney Derrico’s deep understanding of the correct procedure and her ability to find solutions, this client’s prosecution was terminated and he was not subjected to the harsh criminal justice system.

The outcome of an individual case depends on a variety of factors unique to that case. Case results do not guarantee or predict a similar result in any similar or future case.