New Haven Drug Possession with Intent to Distribute Penalties

In Connecticut, a person can be charged with both mere possession and possession with intent to sell. Often, the police will charge both and they leave it to the court to figure out what the appropriate charge is.

Whether the person can be convicted of both is a legal issue implicating double jeopardy, but in the initial steps of being arrested, often the police will charge them with both offenses. It is important to combat these offenses early, because the penalties for drug possession with intent to distribute in New Haven can be extensive. It is essential to work with a skilled drug possession with intent attorney who can build a strong defense as soon as possible.


In New Haven, a possession with intent to distribute law violation changes a misdemeanor into a felony charge that carries significant periods of incarceration and possible mandatory minimum sentences. This charge takes it up a step in severity. From mere possession, it becomes a felony and there are numerous consequences associated with that. So, it increases the possible penalties and is a more serious case than mere possession of a controlled substance.

The potential penalties associated with possession with intent to distribute in New Haven charge are significant. For a first offender, it carries up to 15 years in jail. There is also the possibility of mandatory minimum sentences. It changes the charge from mere possession, where a person is facing the maximum of a year in jail to a felony where a person is facing a maximum of 15 years in jail. It increases the possible penalties significantly and makes it a more serious case than a mere possession charge. New Haven drug possession with intent to distribute penalties can be very serious, requiring the assistance of a drug lawyer early on in a case.

Burden of Proof

Under the charge of possession with intent to sell, one element is that the individual possessed a narcotic or controlled substance and that individual had the intent to sell or distribute that same substance. The way the state tries to prove these types of charges is by the circumstantial evidence surrounding the arrest.

Often, the prosecutors will rely on the amount of a particular substance that is in possession or the packaging, for example, if it is heroin and they have multiple bundles setup for a hand to hand sale. They will look to see if they have scales, tools used to package the material, or other items that suggest the person intends to sell. The prosecutor will look to the facts and circumstances surrounding the arrest and the possession of that substance to prove its case. The prosecution relies on circumstantial evidence to prove the intent of an individual, like the typical types of items that the prosecutor will rely on when pursuing a case for possession with intent to sell.