Operate or Maintain a Drug House – California Health & Safety Code 11366
This crime you don't really see people getting caught doing a lot, but you do see people who are selling drugs being able to plead guilty to this charge instead of the more serious sales charge under the right circumstances and assuming their attorney is able to convince a judge or prosecutor to permit them to plea to this type of a charge versus a sales charge which obviously carries a much higher penalty.
But the main gist of this type of drug charge has to do with somebody who is allowing people to do drugs at a home or location that they own. One of the key elements would obviously be that the person who's being charged with this offense knew, or reasonably should have known, that people were doing drugs, and the purpose for having the home was to do drugs.
If on the other hand, that person leased or rented a home and then the individual they were leasing and renting from, decided to get involved with allowing people to do drugs in the home, the issue would be a little more difficult for the prosecutors to prove if that particular individual, who owns the home knew or reasonably should have known that it was being operated out of a drug house, the policy and thinking behind this particular charge is to help those individuals who are addicted to drugs.
Because the easier it is to do drugs and the easier it is for them to be facilitated to you, the more likely it is that you will do them.
Protecting Neighborhoods From Drug Activity
I think the bottom line though that in order for somebody to stop doing drugs, they themselves are going to have to decide not to do them, and even if there weren't any houses pursuant to Health & Safety Code Section 11366 that provided a location to do drugs, and even sometimes provides themselves drugs, the individual — if they're addicted — is going to find a way to do drugs.
I think another big reason that this Health & Safety Code Section is around is to protect the neighborhoods as well because people get involved in letting others use their house to do drugs, and now you have a bunch of people coming and going from the house, disturbing the neighbors.
Also, it's not a healthy environment. So, really what this Health & Safety Code Section is looking to do is to protect neighborhoods, protect the public and protect those individuals who might come in contact with people who are just looking to do drugs in their neighborhood.
Experienced Drug Crime Lawyer
So, if you're charged with this Health & Safety Code Section. Let's sit down and talk about it. Obviously, you don't want this on your record. It's a bad charge to have on your record in general and sometimes the police simply don't have it right and you shouldn't be charged with this because you had no idea that individuals might be doing drugs at a home that you own and that there's another side of the story that the police didn't get when they did their original investigation.
Obviously, you want that story to come out through your attorney, not you, because you may do or say something that incriminates you or the police may twist around what you had to say.
So, let your attorney do the talking. Let your attorney figure out how to deal with a situation where you're being accused of allowing your home to be used for drug purposes so that addicts can use the home so that sales can go on and other nefarious activity.