Drug charges can be mild, from misdemeanor to felony charges, depending on how much is in possession at the time of the arrest. It is essential to know and remember your rights upon arrest, from when you are handcuffed to when you are booked and put in jail.
A defense attorney will take all information from those time frames and develop a case that will work against the prosecution to prove your innocence or to reduce the charges. Getting a reasonable attorney to do this is critical because they know all the laws the arresting officers must follow and the procedures that must take place. Having an attorney that understands this and can utilize it in court will mean the difference between jail time and not.
The Differences Between a Misdemeanor and a Drug Possession Felony
The primary difference between a misdemeanor and a drug possession felony in this situation is how much is in the accused’s possession. Large amounts could fall in the category of intent to distribute, which puts it into a different category of charges and penalties. Too many misdemeanors could also add up to becoming a felony.
The drug charges stick over time, and the judge will eventually have enough and throw the book at the accused. A good defense attorney will find ways to get their client off the hook. They will deal with the prosecution to reduce the charges if they cannot.
The first thing to developing a good defense case is knowing and understanding the charges. The defense attorneys usually know the judges and the prosecution well enough to know the opposing team’s strategies and outcomes of the decisions. This is an advantage in how the case will play out.
Once the defense attorney learns this, they will find out all the details of their client. The initial consultation outcome will determine the defense’s fighting grounds in the case.
The Primary Strategy of the Defense Attorney
The goal of the defense attorney’s strategy should always flow toward proving the client’s innocence. They review four primary things as they listen to every detail of the client’s description of how the arrest took place. If any of these attracts the defense attorney’s attention, they will have a strong case. These are the four things the attorney listens for in the consultation:
- Did the drugs belong to the accused?
- Was it really possession?
- Is coercion a factor?
- Did the arresting officer follow protocol?
Was it Really Possession?
The prosecution must work toward proving that the accused had the drugs in their possession and that they were fully aware of the situation. Defense attorneys must put the doubt into effect: the accused may have had the drugs in their possession, but they were unaware they were there.
A prime example would be if a client borrowed their best friend’s car, and the drugs were found inside it during a routine traffic stop. The accused may not have known the drugs were in the vehicle. This is a defense that will hold up in court because it is a situation that is unavoidable if the accused knew nothing about the drugs hidden in the car. If it was in plain sight, it might be different.
Is It Possession?
The central meaning of possession is that the drugs are on the person, such as in a pocket, coat, home, or vehicle. It leaves doubt that it is a possession if it is not their home, car, or coat. However, if it were in the pocket of the accused, it would be difficult to say it isn’t their pants and that they wouldn’t know that drugs were in their pocket.
In some situations, the accused was arrested in a drug bust sting operation, and they were around the drugs but had none on their person. Suppose the drugs were on a table somewhere around them or in the same room. The arresting officer could add possession charges, but the defense can say it was not their home and the drugs were not their client’s.
Is Coercion a Factor?
The drug world is fierce and can be violent. The court would listen and hear out a case if the accused was threatened into saying the drugs were theirs when it wasn’t or doing the bidding of others involved by terrorizing or by use of force. This is called operating under duress.
Therefore, anyone threatening another individual to hide or remove the drugs and getting caught with them could have a strong defense case if the attorney can prove it. They have a team of investigators who can find that information and subpoena those involved to testify in court under oath.
Is the Arrest Legit?
This final thing can make or break a drug possession case. Everything must go by the Constitutional Laws during an arrest. Probable cause or a warrant must be the reason for a traffic stop or entry onto private property. The officer cannot randomly pick on someone to arrest or harass. Even if they have drugs, the case will be dismissed in court due to a lack of protocol.
The officer must not use force unless provoked or their life is threatened. If the alleged fully cooperates and the officer attacks or abuses their obligation, the case could be thrown out of court.
At the time of the arrest, the Miranda Rights must be read, and the alleged must come to understand those rights while the arrest is taking place.
Contact Trapp Law, LLC. for a Possession of Drugs Charge
If you need an attorney to handle your case for the possession of drugs, Trapp Law, LLC is well knowledgeable in handling these situations. The general issues will be reviewed and monitored, and the steps will begin progressing with the case. After the initial consultation, the defense attorney will work to prove your innocence or work to reduce or drop the charges. Trapp Law, LLC is available to assist. Contact us immediately!