Defending yourself: Drug possession charges

Drug possession is a charge that encompasses many different circumstances. It could refer to someone who is in possession of prescription medications without a prescription, someone with heroin in his or her vehicle or someone in possession of a small baggie of marijuana.

Drug possession is not a single thing, and as such, it's important that your case is represented fairly and accurately. If you're accused of possessing drugs, you need to understand the charges and what kinds of penalties you could face in the future.

Depending on the circumstances of your arrest, there may be things you can do to get the charges against you dropped or reduced. For instance, if an officer pulled your vehicle over but had no reason to do so, you could claim it was an unlawful stop. If someone searches your home without reasonable suspicion or a warrant, then that could be a violation of your Fourth Amendment rights. If that happens, any evidence collected against you becomes inadmissible in court.

A strong defense for someone who is caught with drugs in his or her possession in a car or luggage could be that the drugs aren't his or hers at all. If you share luggage or have passengers in your vehicle, it's possible that those individuals were in possession of drugs without your knowledge. This could work well as a defense if you have a story or enough evidence to support your claims.

Your attorney can review your case with you to determine what a good defense is. The right defense makes a difference when your case goes to court.

Source: FindLaw, "Drug Possession Defenses," accessed Feb. 22, 2018

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