Addictive substances such as alcohol and many drugs can wreak havoc on an individual. For many people, it begins as a way to self-medicate or results from medication prescribed after an injury. Few people set out to become addicted to any substance, but once it happens, it often takes over their lives.
In 2017, 2,282 people here in Maryland lost their lives due to drugs or alcohol. Those who live through calamities involving their addictions often end up facing criminal charges of some kind. If you are one of those people, you may face DUI charges, possession charges and more, depending on the circumstances.
What you need is help, not a stay in the county jail
Even though you could face some sort of incarceration as a result of a conviction for a crime related to drugs or alcohol, it is obvious the state of Maryland wants to reduce the impact that addictive substances have on the lives of its residents. Syringe exchange and Overdose Response programs aim to help individuals addicted to certain drugs stay alive.
Maryland used to be number two on the list of states with the most people who test positive for the HIV virus, largely due to the drug-using community. In addition, opioid overdoses grew to an alarming point as well. These programs help combat contracting diseases such as HIV from dirty needles and help prevent overdose deaths.
The state also has numerous treatment programs to free people like you from addictions. It stands to reason that the state would more than likely prefer you recover from your addiction and be a productive member of society rather than take up space in the jail and prison system when that isn't what you need the most. You aren't violent -- you just got in over your head and now you need help.
Could entering into rehab help keep you from a conviction?
Depending on your circumstances, you may find that entering into a drug and alcohol rehabilitation program could prevent you from having a conviction on your record. It may be possible to have your record expunged, contingent upon your successful completion of a program. The court will likely decide what "success" means and what type of program you must complete. Even so, it may provide you with the best outcome possible to your current situation.