Philadelphia Drug Possession Defense Lawyers

Drug possession charges sound like a faint possibility in the distance to most people until it happens to them. The Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC have seen the toll an investigation or arrest can take on our clients before they even come to our office, let alone going to a trial. No matter what prosecutors are saying about you, you can count on our more than 17 years of experience to deliver the results you deserve.

My first thought when I hear about a drug possession case is, ‘Please don’t say they didn’t talk to the police already.’ But even when that happens, I think about all the ways that police and prosecutors got their facts wrong. Contact me if you want to put that energy and tenacity behind your case. I will dutifully stand by your side throughout the process and demonstrate what it feels like to have a legal champion in the courtroom.”

Brad V. Shuttleworth, Esq.

Founder & Philadelphia Criminal Defense Lawyer, Shuttleworth Law PC

Call Brad for My Free Case Evaluation Now

If you want to talk to Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers about your or your loved one’s situation, it only takes one phone call (maybe two if he is in court and needs to call you back) to get the information you need.

Call Shuttleworth Law PC now to schedule your Free Case Evaluation at (215) 774-1371 or by messaging us online. We are also able to talk via secure video conferencing if you prefer to meet digitally face-to-face.

Areas Served: Bridesburg-Kensington-Port Richmond, Center City, Far Northeast Philadelphia, Germantown-Chestnut Hill, Kensington, Near Northeast Philadelphia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Roxborough-Manayunk, South Philadelphia, Southwest Philadelphia, Upper North Philadelphia, West Philadelphia, and all surrounding areas.

Shuttleworth Law PC Aggressively Defends Possession of a Controlled Substance Charges in PA

Pennsylvania’s Controlled Substance, Drug, Device, and Cosmetic Act (the “Act”) give the Commonwealth authority to arrest you for drug possession. As such, the law explicitly bans the possession of:

“…any controlled substance, other drugs, device or cosmetic that is adulterated or misbranded.”

That’s right. You could face drug possession charges, even if they weren’t illicit drugs. While those types of cases are not as common, this info gives you an idea of how seriously the Commonwealth treats possession cases.

With this information in mind, it is critical that you speak with Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC if you are accused of having, using, distributing, making, or selling any of the following drugs:

Schedule I Drug Possession

Schedule I drugs are those with no medical use and high abuse potential. Examples include: heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote.

Schedule II Drug Possession

Schedule II drugs are dangerous and those with high abuse potential. Examples include: hydrocodone, cocaine, methamphetamine, methadone, hydromorphone, meperidine, oxycodone, fentanyl, Dexedrine, Adderall, and Ritalin

Schedule III Drug Possession

Schedule III drugs hold a moderate to low abuse potential. Examples include: codeine, ketamine, anabolic steroids, and testosterone.

Schedule IV Drug Possession

Schedule IV drugs have a low potential for abuse. Examples include: Xanax, Darvocet, Valium, Ativan, Ambien, and Tramadol.

Schedule V Drug Possession

Schedule V drugs have the lowest abuse potential. Examples include: Robitussin AC, Lomotil, Motofen, Lyrica, and Parepectolin.

Get Advice When Your Possession Charges Aren’t So Simple

No one should ever have to pay the consequences of an unproven crime. Call the Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC to schedule your Free Case Evaluation at (215) 774-1371.

Reality Check: Pennsylvania Doesn’t Like Drugs and Punishes Convictions Harshly

Pennsylvania is dead-set against allowing drug possession offenders to walk away free. However, just because they hold this position doesn’t mean that you or your loved one have to accept those consequences just yet.

Your supposed “day in court” could be just another sound bite flooding your awareness, but it has real meaning. The court is giving you a chance to investigate your case, counter with what really happened (or, let’s face it, how prosecutors got it wrong), and present your findings at the right moment.

The right defensive strategy could help you prevent legal consequences from up-ending your entire life.

Here are the consequences that the Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC wants to help you avoid:

  • Prison time
  • Thousands in fines
  • Addiction counseling
  • Child custody loss
  • Probation
  • Loss of other rights
  • Other court-ordered penalties

The Pennsylvania justice system has one job to do: prove that a crime was committed with given parameters using proper procedure and levy an appropriate punishment.

Do you know how hard that is to actually do?

It’s pretty hard. They know it. Your Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers know it. The law knows it.

And now, you know it.

Don’t let the legal process scare you away from what could be an effectively straightforward or complex case strategy. Regardless of your legal options, Shuttleworth Law PC will explain where things stand and what steps you can take to mitigate the negative impact on your life.

Some Factors Influence the Outcome of Your Case

Yes, a criminal court judge could throw the book at you, send you to jail or prison, and assess heavy fines. But that is entirely theoretical. You haven’t had your day in court yet.

Even if prosecutors have a solid case against you, there could be several factors that influence a judge’s decision on sentencing. Again, that is only if prosecutors have enough evidence to convict beyond a reasonable doubt.

What are these ‘so-called’ factors that could influence the outcome of your PA drug possession charges? Here is what our Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers offers you:

  • Factor 1. Drugs involved: Drug schedules with lower numbers face more severe punishments. For example, a Schedule I drug is more consequential than a Schedule V drug.
  • Factor 2. How much you had: The amount of drugs on a person can sometimes indicate the severity of the situation. Carrying specific amounts may increase your penalties.
  • Factor 3. Your criminal record: Is this a first offense, or have you been convicted of a crime in the past? Penalties will increase with every new drug conviction.
  • Factor 4. Your intent: Intent plays a huge role in your case. Personal use is typically not punished as harshly as, say, having the intent to deliver them to someone, generally speaking.

If you’ve read the preceding list, the good news is that you have a general idea on what you could expect. What you shouldn’t do is take it as legal advice regarding how to handle your own case.

Why? Let’s take a look at a completely hypothetical example below.

Admitting Fault to Lesser Factors Is Not a Defensive Strategy

Pretend you were dealing drugs and got arrested for it. You’re freaking out in jail while waiting to post bond. All you have is time to think about what could happen to you and mistakenly assume prosecutors have way more evidence against you than you think.

Maybe you even start telling yourself, “I might as well just admit to lesser factors. That way, I’ll at least avoid the highest penalties.


STOP. RIGHT. THERE. That is how a lot of really, really DEFENSIBLE cases derail.

But let’s continue with this scenario.

While sitting in jail or at home, what you didn’t know is that you could have investigated your charges independently. What if Philadelphia drug possession lawyers could have revealed that the police never had probable cause to arrest you in the first place? Or perhaps they didn’t even execute the search properly.

That means you could have walked from the courtroom with your head held high because your accusers (and haters) got it wrong. But by admitting to lesser factors as a strategy, you innocently and unknowingly prevented that from happening, or at least made your case much, much more challenging to beat.


Look, Shuttleworth Law PC gets it.

You’re scared, angry, or anxious, and sometimes, forcing a situation will get you immediate answers. Unfortunately, this instant gratification also comes with consequences, something no one can fix, and even if you try, it’s an uphill battle.

Avoid trying to “self-lawyer” your way out of charges since that is really what causes most case-losing mistakes. Instead, put the experience, knowledge, and cool touch of Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC on your side from the very beginning. Prosecutors will not have their way with your case if you work with our legal team.

Our Firm Has Helped the Accused Walk Away Free

Shuttleworth Law PC is a results-oriented law firm. Our #1 goal is to get you the outcome you want. While every case is unique, it can be reassuring to know that others in your situation have genuinely been blown away by our work.

Our legal has accomplished excellent results for clients. Check out some of our recent case results below:

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. C.L.

Ruling: Not Guilty

Client charged with armed robbery of a bank in Philadelphia. The incident was caught on video. Trial was held in front of a judge, and client was found NOT GUILTY of all charges. The defense was mistaken identification. As a criminal defense lawyer in Philadelphia, I take great pride in achieving the most advantageous outcome.

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. D.A.

Ruling: Not Guilty

Client was charged with aggravated assault of a correctional officer while in custody at the Detention Center in Philadelphia, PA (part of the Philadelphia Prison System). He testified that he had to punch the correctional officer in self-defense, because he was attacked by two officers. Client was found NOT GUILTY.

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. D.C.

Ruling: Not Guilty

Client accused of burglarizing a home at night.  A neighbor witness claimed to have seen the burglar and recognized him as client.  Witness also claimed he knew client from the neighborhood, which is why he recognized him.  Mistaken identification was the defense. Client found NOT GUILTY of all charges.

Why Hire Shuttleworth Law PC

REASSURANCE is the most compelling reason to hire Shuttleworth Law PC. Who knows what could happen to your future if you face the courts unrepresented?

Legal mistakes can lead to lifelong consequences that no one would ever want to endure, such as fines and time in prison. Stop them from happening in the first place: hire the Philadelphia drug crimes defense lawyers at Shuttleworth Law PC to represent your rights.

“I’m Ready to Call Brad for My Free Case Evaluation”

Those are the words we have been hoping to hear. You deserve a helping hand when the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania accuses you of illegally possessing a controlled substance.

Call Shuttleworth Law PC now to schedule your Free Case Evaluation at (215) 774-1371 or via our contact form below. We serve all areas of Pennsylvania/South Jersey and can make secure video conferencing arrangements if you prefer.

FAQs: Pennsylvania Drug Possession Defense

While the Commonwealth’s laws are clear about possessing controlled substances illegally, you or your loved one are not responsible for unproven crimes and unenforceable penalties. Work with a PA criminal defense law firm to review the alleged facts, offer information on where your case stands, and execute a chosen strategy on your behalf, updated as necessary throughout the legal process.

Below, our Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers have answered some of your most frequently asked questions (FAQs) to provide additional general legal knowledge:

How do you get a possession charge dismissed in PA?

You get a PA possession charge dismissed by convincing prosecutors that it is in the state’s best interest to do so. Hire a Pennsylvania criminal defense lawyer to explain your legal options and, where possible, argue for a dismissal. Your lawyer could also negotiate for acceptance into a Drug Diversion & Reentry Program, resulting in a withdrawal and unopposed expungement of your charges upon completion.

Do first-time drug possession offenders go to jail in Pennsylvania?

Yes, first-time drug possession offenders could possibly go to jail in Pennsylvania. They could face up to one-year imprisonment and $5,000 in fines if convicted of simple possession. When facing Possession With Intent to Deliver charges, a felony conviction could result in a maximum of 15 years imprisonment and $250,000 in fines.

However, every person has the right to defend their criminal charges in court to avoid a conviction with penalties.

Is possession of a controlled substance a felony in PA?

Some controlled substance possession charges are felonies in PA, but this grading typically applies to healthcare-related violations and Possession With Intent to Deliver (PWID) cases. Felonies are the most severe grades of criminal charges, resulting in several years of imprisonment and thousands of dollars in fines. However, the Commonwealth grades most simple possession charges as

What is simple possession in PA?

PA’s simple possession law states that it is illegal to knowingly or intentionally possess a controlled substance without a valid reason under 35 Pa. Stat. Ann. § 780-113(a)(16). This law grades a simple possession charge as a misdemeanor, carrying up to one year in prison and maximum fines of $5,000.

How do I get legal advice from Philadelphia drug possession defense lawyers?

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