Charles L. Truncale
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A Former Federal Prosecutor Who Now Fights For Defendants

Potential penalties for “Drug Drive-Thru” charges

This week, a couple was arrested after they reconstructed the kitchen window of their mobile home into a "drive-thru" window to sell heroin and other drugs. The drive-thru included an open/closed business sign and directions to guide customers to the window, according to police at the scene.

Charges for possession of a controlled substance may come as no small slap on the wrist in Florida. However, in cases like this, multiple charges can be issued too.

For example, William Parrish Jr. and McKenzee Dobbs of Ocala, Florida, were arrested for their “drug drive-thru” on August 23 for multiple charges. William Parrish, 32, was charged with possession of drugs with intent to sell, keeping a dwelling used to sell drugs, driving under the influence and resisting arrest without violence.

Here are the separate penalties that may come with each of these charges.

Possession of fentanyl in Florida

Because the couple’s heroin was laced with Fentanyl, the couple may also face charges for possessing fentanyl. Those who possess any amount up to 4 grams of fentanyl in Florida may face a third-degree felony with a minimum jail sentence of 3 years.

Intent to sell heroin

According to Florida law, if a defendant is found to have had intentions to sell, manufacture, or deliver any amount of heroin, the defendant may a face a 2nd degree felony, with a sentence up to 15 years in prison, up to 15 years of probation, a fine up to $10,000 and driver’s license suspension.

Dwelling used to sell drugs

Any store dwelling (house, shop, warehouse, building, structure, etc.) which is visited by persons for the purpose of illegally using, keeping, selling or delivering an illegal substance is deemed a public nuisance.

Those who willfully keep or aid another in keeping such public nuisance may face a third-degree felony charge, punishable by a fine up to $5,000 and up to 10 years of jailtime.

Driving under the influence

If a defendant is found driving under the influence of a controlled substance, penalties could include driver’s license suspension, 6 months of jailtime, 50 hours of community service and a fine between $500 and $1,000 dollars for the offender’s first offense.

Second, third and subsequent offenses carry more and more substantial penalties.

Resisting arrest

Resisting arrest with violence is a felony in Florida, whereas resisting arrest without violence is a first-degree misdemeanor. The misdemeanor charge is punishable by up to one year of jailtime and/or a fine up to $1000.

When defendants are facing multiple charges, charges may be treated separately or run concurrently, depending on a number of factors including, the defendant’s criminal history, the court/judge’s opinion, whether a plea bargain is made and the circumstances of the case.

If you are facing a drug-related charge or multiple criminal charges, contact an attorney to learn more about the penalties you may be facing and what strategies may help negotiate the best outcome for your case.

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