How Can I Fight a Drug Possession Charge?
If you’re charged with possession of drugs, either for personal use or with intent to sell, a drug crime attorney is the first person you should contact following an arrest. The risk factors can be huge, including suspension of a driver’s license, fines, or incarceration, which could make finding employment difficult in the future.
An experienced attorney can explore the kinds of defenses that might apply in your case.
Potential Defenses for Drug Possession
There are several defenses a drug crime attorney can use that might work in your favor when defending a drug possession charge.
Some of these defenses include:
- Questionable facts, testimony or evidence in the case. Some of the witnesses may have questionable backgrounds and could be testifying simply to protect themselves or get less time behind bars.
- Procedural errors such as unlawful search and seizure. Challenges to search and seizure are among the most common defenses used by drug crime attorneys because the Fourth Amendment provides a degree of protection for citizens from government action. Searches are legal only in cases where drugs or drug paraphernalia are in plain sight, such as drugs in view during a routine traffic stop or a clearly visible marijuana field. Without a search warrant, if an officer opened a trunk during that traffic stop, the drug charges could be easily challenged, and that evidence—which could be the only evidence—would be excluded at trial.
- Drugs belong to someone else. This course of action may work better in court than it does with a teenager’s parents, but it is still difficult because charges can be filed even if the defendant only had access to the drugs in question. If this is your scenario, speak to a drug crime attorney before talking to police.
- Chain of custody concerns. Sometimes, drug evidence goes missing before trial. A good drug crime attorney can raise questions about the drugs, especially if there are concerns about the handling of drug evidence.
- In certain cases, defendants are coerced by officers or informants into using drugs when they otherwise would not have, creating a case for entrapment.
- Legal drug use. In states where marijuana is not legal, medical marijuana might be. That won’t be a defense in a federal case, but if may be a workable defense if the defendant has a doctor’s prescription for the drug.
- Seized substances may not be drugs. Prosecutors must prove that a seized substance such as white powder they allege is cocaine actually is an illegal drug by sending it for crime lab analysis. A drug crime attorney can raise questions about the report, and may require the crime lab analyst to testify at trial.
Are You in Search of a Drug Crime Attorney?
Contact the law office of Rowena Nelson, LLC. She and her team of skilled attorneys include experienced drug crime attorneys and can be reached via email at [email protected] or by calling (301)-358-3271 for a consultation.
Located in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, Rowena N. Nelson’s offices serve the entire state of Maryland.