Santa Clara Deputy Arrested for Possession of a Controlled Substance (CA Health and Safety Code 11350 and 11550)

48-year-old Santa Clara deputy (name withheld to protect the anonymity of the accused) who has worked for 14 years, has recently been arrested for possession of a controlled substance (CA Health and Safety Code 11350), and being under the influence of a controlled substance (CA Health and Safety Code 11550) after local law enforcement officials found that he had been living with individuals he knew to be of the ‘criminal element,’ including parolees and persons currently on probation.

If you are arrested in the state of California on charges pursuant to (CA Health and Safety Code 11350), these charges will be taken very seriously by prosecutors in your area.  The law dictates that possession of any controlled substance without a prescription is illegal and this includes things like heroin, peyote, any kind of opiate, and some hallucinogenic substances.  It also includes hydrocodone and codeine, substances that are commonly prescribed by physicians, but illegal without a prescription.  In his case, there has been no information given to the public concerning the type of controlled substance he has been accused of possessing.  What can be known is that it was not marijuana, as the law regulates it separately.

However, prosecutors will have to prove that he knew the drug was in his home, knew that it was an illegal controlled substance, and that there was enough of it in order to consider it a controlled substance that could have been used as such (California Jury Instructions, Criminal, 12.00).  If convicted on this charge, he may face up to 3 years in state prison as this charge is usually treated as a felony.  On the other hand, if he’s convicted on charges pursuant to (CA Health and Safety Code 11550), which is far more difficult to prove, then he may be looking at 90 days to 1 year in county jail and a maximum of 5 years of informal probation.