Facing drug charges is always a serious matter, even when the substance or quantity of possession is relatively small. Unfortunately, state and federal drug laws often treat drug offenses more harshly than any other non-violent crime, resulting in punishments that far outweigh their alleged offenses.
If you or someone you love recently received drug possession charges, you should begin building your legal defense immediately. Among other reasons, it is important to review the evidence against you, if possible. The longer you wait to begin defending yourself, the fewer options and legal tools you have available, and the more difficult it is to protect your rights.
Examining the circumstances of your arrest
Often, individuals receive drug charges on flimsy legal grounds, or they may experience a violation of their rights during their interaction with police. As you begin building your defense, examine the circumstances of your arrest for any procedural or legal weaknesses. For instance, if you received possession charges after police find drugs in your home, it is possible that someone else left them there, especially if you’ve had visitors recently or hosted a party.
Likewise, it is useful to consider any actions by your arresting officer that violate your constitutional rights. If an officer breaks the law while attempting to enforce the law, courts may not uphold the charges.
Put the prosecution on defense
Drug charges come with serious sentences, so you must use all the resources you have available to keep your interests secure. It is often useful to request laboratory testing to verify the chemical composition of the substance you allegedly possessed. This places two burdens on your prosecution; producing the physical evidence and verifying that it is the substance matching your charges.
Sometimes, prosecution cannot produce the evidence against you, because of misfiling or misappropriation. Without physical evidence to test, the case against you weakens. Similarly, if your test results come back inconclusive, or if they do not match your charges, the case against you weakens. Remember, your prosecutor must prove that you committed the alleged offenses, and you may have many other ways to undermine their narrative.
Building a strong defense requires time and attention, because a strong defense is personal and detailed. As you begin building your defense, make sure to use all the legal resources and guidance that you need to keep your rights secure and push back against harsh drug possession sentencing.