Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC), one of the largest electronic dance music festivals in the world, starts this Friday, June 17, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Since its inception in 1996, EDC has become world-renowned for its marquee acts, emerging artists, circus-style performers, and Las Vegas-style party atmosphere.
The three-day music festival has also become synonymous with recreational use of party drugs like cocaine, ecstasy (MDMA), LSD (Acid), and methamphetamines. While the organizers of Electric Daisy Carnival have publicized the festival has a zero-tolerance for illegal drugs, possession and use of controlled substances at EDC remains a common practice.
According to an investigative report from the LA Times, 19 drug-related deaths have occurred during the EDC festivities from 1996 to 2015. Last year, a 24-year old UC Irvine graduate died of an MDMA overdose.
In 2014, another 24-year old EDC attendee also died from ecstasy intoxication or an MDMA overdose in the parking lot outside of the festival. That same year a 25-year old male died of ecstasy and cocaine intoxication in his hotel room.
In 2012, a 22-year old female under the influence of ecstasy, methamphetamines, and gamma –hydroxybutryic suffered paranoid delusions and fell from a 20-story hotel building to her death.
Drug Arrests at EDC
Due to the frequency of drug-related deaths at EDC, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) is stationed outside and inside the festival. According to the Electric Daisy Carnival website, all attendees are subject to a TSA-style search or a search similar to search performed at the airport. The search will require all attendees to empty pockets and bags, have all items examined, a full pat-down, and possibly require removal of shoes.
In the past many festival goers have still attempt to smuggle illicit drugs into the festival. In 2014 LVMPD made 73 felony narcotics arrest during the three-day festival. Law enforcement also seized smaller amounts of controlled substances and issued citations.
Considering EDC celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, the festival is expected to be bigger than ever. Last year more than 400,000 people attended Electric Daisy Carnival (approximately 134,000 each day). Las Vegas law enforcement expects more people and more drugs and will be on high alert as a result.
Las Vegas Drug Charges
Commonly, an individual will be charged with the following drug offenses in Las Vegas, Nevada:
- Possession of a Controlled Substance
- Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
- Possession with the Intent to Distribute
- Drug Trafficking
The specific charge an individual may sustain after being caught with drugs depends on several factors, including the type of drug, the amount or weight of the drug, and prior drug offenses.
Ecstasy (MDMA), LSD, GHB, Methamphetamine, Marijuana, and Cocaine are popular in the party and rave scene in Las Vegas. Although many people view these drugs as recreational and not as serious as other controlled substances, the criminal penalties are severe.
MDMA, LSD, and Meth are considered Schedule I drugs under Nevada law. Schedule I drugs are considered highly addictive and have no accepted medical use. Cocaine is considered a Schedule II drug. Schedule II drugs have an accepted medical use, but a high tendency of abuse.
A first offense possession of a Schedule I or II drug is considered a category E felony. Category E felonies are punishable by one to four years in prison and/or a fine up to $5,000.
Marijuana is also considered a Schedule I drug; however, the criminal penalties differ. First-offense possession of marijuana (1 ounce or less) is considered a misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine of no more than $600.
A conviction for a drug offense can have serious personal and professional consequences, including jail, fines, employment restrictions, and housing restrictions. It is important to consult an experienced drug defense attorney immediately following an arrest.
Joel Mann of The Law Office of Joel Mann is an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense attorney. Immediately following your arrest he will use his skills and experience to obtain the best possible bail arrangement and begin building a strong defense on your behalf.
The Law Office of Joel Mann diligently defends clients throughout Clark County, including Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas, Boulder City, and surrounding areas. Contact Joel Mann at (702) 474-MANN (6266) for a confidential review of your case.