When a young man in his 20’s was recently charged with marijuana possession in Sarasota County, he was obviously worried and knew that the impact could be severe. Since this is considered a first-degree misdemeanor, if he was convicted he could face some time in jail and a $1,000 fine in addition to earning a mark on his criminal record and a one-year driver’s license suspension. While the young man did not want to experience any of these harsh penalties, it was particularly important to him to preserve his ability to drive.

This led him to Sarasota criminal defense lawyer Erika Valcarcel, who began working to protect her client’s interests. During discussions with the prosecution, it was apparent that the state wanted to pursue a conviction and probation. Not satisfied with the result, which would still require the loss of her client’s license, attorney Valcarcel persisted and fought for the best possible outcome, In the end, attorney Valcarcel negotiated for the young man to keep his license and simply pay a fine.

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