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Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

Possession of drug paraphernalia is an extremely common arrest in Jacksonville and surrounding counties and usually is accompanied by larger drug/possession charges. Paraphernalia can include any object that is being used for the smoking, making, planting, or packaging of drugs. While the typical paraphernalia includes syringes, pipes, scales, and rolling papers, the statute criminalizes any object that is used for drug purposes.

Florida Possession of Drug Paraphernalia charges are sometimes difficult to prove in court. The "possession" requirement can be easily attacked in court by a skilled criminal defense attorney. Often times the item in question was not found in the actual possession of an individual, but rather in close proximity. There are several legal hurdles that would have to by overcome by the prosecutor in order to prove that an individual "possessed" an item in such circumstances. Our defense attorneys can assess your case and attack any weak points in the state's case.

For what seems like such an easy charge to discuss, the law regarding drug paraphernalia is lengthy. Below is the Florida Jury Instructions and Florida Statute 893.145 regarding Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Contact the Florida Criminal Law Lawyers at Arnold and New to represent you!

Florida Jury Instruction 25.15

To prove the crime of (crime charged), the State must prove the following (applicable number) elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

1. (Defendant)

[delivered]

[possessed with intent to deliver]

[manufactured with intent to deliver] drug paraphernalia.

Give only if possession is charged.

2. (Defendant) had knowledge of the presence of the drug paraphernalia.

3. (Defendant) knew or reasonably should have known that the drug paraphernalia would be used to plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, conceal, inject, ingest, inhale or otherwise introduce into the human body (specific substance alleged).

Mere proximity to a paraphernalia is not sufficient to establish control over that paraphernalia when it is not in a place over which the person has control.

Constructive possession means the paraphernalia is in a place over which the (defendant) has control, or in which the (defendant) has concealed it.

In order to establish constructive possession of a controlled substance if the controlled substance is in a place over which the (defendant) does not have control, the State must prove the (defendant's) (1) control over the controlled substance and (2) knowledge that the controlled substance was within the (defendant's) presence.

Possession may be joint, that is, two or more persons may jointly possess an article, exercising control over it. In that case, each of those persons is considered to be in possession of that article.

If a person has exclusive possession of a paraphernalia, knowledge of its presence may be inferred or assumed.

If a person does not have exclusive possession of a paraphernalia, knowledge of its presence may not be inferred or assumed.

Drug Paraphernalia. § 893.145, Fla. Stat.

The term "drug paraphernalia" means all equipment, products, and materials of any kind which are used, intended for use, or designed for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, concealing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this chapter. It includes, but is not limited to:

(1) Statements by an owner or by anyone in control of the object concerning its use.

(2) The proximity of the object, in time and space, to a direct violation of this act.

(3) The proximity of the object to controlled substances.

(4) The existence of any residue of controlled substances on the object.

(5) Direct or circumstantial evidence of the intent of an owner, or of anyone in control of the object, to deliver it to persons who he or she knows, or should reasonably know, intend to use the object to facilitate a violation of this act. The innocence of an owner, or of anyone in control of the object, as to a direct violation of this act shall not prevent a finding that the object is intended for use, or designed for use, as drug paraphernalia.

(6) Instructions, oral or written, provided with the object concerning its use.

(7) Descriptive materials accompanying the object which explain or depict its use.

(8) Any advertising concerning its use.

(9) The manner in which the object is displayed for sale.

(10) Whether the owner, or anyone in control of the object, is a legitimate supplier of like or related items to the community, such as a licensed distributor of or dealer in tobacco products.

(11) Direct or circumstantial evidence of the ratio of sales of the object or objects to the total sales of the business enterprise.

(12) The existence and scope of legitimate uses for the object in the community including metal, wooden, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic pipes with or without screens, permanent screens, hashish heads, or punctured metal bowls, water pipes, carburetion tubes and devices, smoking and carburetion masks, roach clips: meaning objects used to hold burning material, such as a cannabis cigarette, that has become too small or too short to be held in the hand; miniature cocaine spoons, and cocaine vials; chamber pipes; carburetor pipes; electric pipes; air-driven pipes; chillums; bongs; ice pipes or chillers;

(13) Expert testimony concerning its use.

Below is listed Florida's Drug Paraphernalia Law.

893.145 "Drug paraphernalia" defined.

The term "drug paraphernalia" means all equipment, products, and materials of any kind which are used, intended for use, or designed for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, concealing, transporting, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this chapter or s. 877.111. Drug paraphernalia is deemed to be contraband which shall be subject to civil forfeiture. The term includes, but is not limited to:

(1) Kits used, intended for use, or designed for use in the planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, or harvesting of any species of plant which is a controlled substance or from which a controlled substance can be derived.

(2) Kits used, intended for use, or designed for use in manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, or preparing controlled substances.

(3) Isomerization devices used, intended for use, or designed for use in increasing the potency of any species of plant which is a controlled substance.

(4) Testing equipment used, intended for use, or designed for use in identifying, or in analyzing the strength, effectiveness, or purity of, controlled substances.

(5) Scales and balances used, intended for use, or designed for use in weighing or measuring controlled substances.

(6) Diluents and adulterants, such as quinine hydrochloride, mannitol, mannite, dextrose, and lactose, used, intended for use, or designed for use in cutting controlled substances.

(7) Separation gins and sifters used, intended for use, or designed for use in removing twigs and seeds from, or in otherwise cleaning or refining, cannabis.

(8) Blenders, bowls, containers, spoons, and mixing devices used, intended for use, or designed for use in compounding controlled substances.

(9) Capsules, balloons, envelopes, and other containers used, intended for use, or designed for use in packaging small quantities of controlled substances.

(10) Containers and other objects used, intended for use, or designed for use in storing, concealing, or transporting controlled substances.

(11) Hypodermic syringes, needles, and other objects used, intended for use, or designed for use in parenterally injecting controlled substances into the human body.

(12) Objects used, intended for use, or designed for use in ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing cannabis, cocaine, hashish, hashish oil, or nitrous oxide into the human body, such as:

(a) Metal, wooden, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic pipes, with or without screens, permanent screens, hashish heads, or punctured metal bowls.

(b) Water pipes.

(c) Carburetion tubes and devices.

(d) Smoking and carburetion masks.

(e) Roach clips: meaning objects used to hold burning material, such as a cannabis cigarette, that has become too small or too short to be held in the hand.

(f) Miniature cocaine spoons, and cocaine vials.

(g) Chamber pipes.

(h) Carburetor pipes.

(i) Electric pipes.

(j) Air-driven pipes.

(k) Chillums.

(l) Bongs.

(m) Ice pipes or chillers.

(n) A cartridge or canister, which means a small metal device used to contain nitrous oxide.

(o) A charger, sometimes referred to as a "cracker," which means a small metal or plastic device that contains an interior pin that may be used to expel nitrous oxide from a cartridge or container.

(p) A charging bottle, which means a device that may be used to expel nitrous oxide from a cartridge or canister.

(q) A whip-it, which means a device that may be used to expel nitrous oxide.

(r) A tank.

(s) A balloon.

(t) A hose or tube.

(u) A 2-liter-type soda bottle.

(v) Duct tape.

History.--s. 1, ch. 80-30; s. 6, ch. 2000-320; s. 15, ch. 2000-360.

893.146 Determination of paraphernalia.

In determining whether an object is drug paraphernalia, a court or other authority or jury shall consider, in addition to all other logically relevant factors, the following:

(1) Statements by an owner or by anyone in control of the object concerning its use.

(2) The proximity of the object, in time and space, to a direct violation of this act.

(3) The proximity of the object to controlled substances.

(4) The existence of any residue of controlled substances on the object.

(5) Direct or circumstantial evidence of the intent of an owner, or of anyone in control of the object, to deliver it to persons who he or she knows, or should reasonably know, intend to use the object to facilitate a violation of this act. The innocence of an owner, or of anyone in control of the object, as to a direct violation of this act shall not prevent a finding that the object is intended for use, or designed for use, as drug paraphernalia.

(6) Instructions, oral or written, provided with the object concerning its use.

(7) Descriptive materials accompanying the object which explain or depict its use.

(8) Any advertising concerning its use.

(9) The manner in which the object is displayed for sale.

(10) Whether the owner, or anyone in control of the object, is a legitimate supplier of like or related items to the community, such as a licensed distributor of or dealer in tobacco products.

(11) Direct or circumstantial evidence of the ratio of sales of the object or objects to the total sales of the business enterprise.

(12) The existence and scope of legitimate uses for the object in the community.

(13) Expert testimony concerning its use.

History.--s. 2, ch. 80-30; s. 1445, ch. 97-102.

893.147 Use, possession, manufacture, delivery, transportation, or advertisement of drug paraphernalia.

(1) USE OR POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA.--It is unlawful for any person to use, or to possess with intent to use, drug paraphernalia:

(a) To plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, or conceal a controlled substance in violation of this chapter; or

(b) To inject, ingest, inhale, or otherwise introduce into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this chapter.

Any person who violates this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(2) MANUFACTURE OR DELIVERY OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA.--It is unlawful for any person to deliver, possess with intent to deliver, or manufacture with intent to deliver drug paraphernalia, knowing, or under circumstances where one reasonably should know, that it will be used:

(a) To plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, or conceal a controlled substance in violation of this act; or

(b) To inject, ingest, inhale, or otherwise introduce into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this act.

Any person who violates this subsection is guilty of a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(3) DELIVERY OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA TO A MINOR.--

(a) Any person 18 years of age or over who violates subsection (2) by delivering drug paraphernalia to a person under 18 years of age is guilty of a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(b) It is unlawful for any person to sell or otherwise deliver hypodermic syringes, needles, or other objects which may be used, are intended for use, or are designed for use in parenterally injecting substances into the human body to any person under 18 years of age, except that hypodermic syringes, needles, or other such objects may be lawfully dispensed to a person under 18 years of age by a licensed practitioner, parent, or legal guardian or by a pharmacist pursuant to a valid prescription for same. Any person who violates the provisions of this paragraph is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

(4) TRANSPORTATION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA.--It is unlawful to use, possess with the intent to use, or manufacture with the intent to use drug paraphernalia, knowing or under circumstances in which one reasonably should know that it will be used to transport:

(a) A controlled substance in violation of this chapter; or

(b) Contraband as defined in s. 932.701(2)(a)1.

Any person who violates this subsection commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.

(5) ADVERTISEMENT OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA.--It is unlawful for any person to place in any newspaper, magazine, handbill, or other publication any advertisement, knowing, or under circumstances where one reasonably should know, that the purpose of the advertisement, in whole or in part, is to promote the sale of objects designed or intended for use as drug paraphernalia. Any person who violates this subsection is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.--s. 3, ch. 80-30; s. 1, ch. 81-149; s. 54, ch. 83-215; s. 1, ch. 85-8; s. 223, ch. 91-224; s. 16, ch. 2000-360.

Updated as of September 1, 2009 from http://www.flsenate.gov/.

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