There are many different circumstances that can lead to an arrest on drug charges, but one of the most common is a traffic stop. People who are transporting illegal drugs, whether in small quantities for personal use or large amounts for distribution, are usually aware that violating traffic laws increases the chances that they will be caught. Running a red light or speeding past a state trooper is a good way to get pulled over, and if the officer who stops you finds probable cause to search your vehicle, you could find yourself in serious legal trouble.
Being wrongfully accused of a crime can be extremely stressful especially if you are facing a trial and the serious consequences that go along with it. This week a woman was found not guilty on 11 charges of prescription medication misconduct.
Cases were dismissed last week from Philadelphia courts that were based on work by narcotics officers. As a result of the dismissal of these 41 drug cases, the defendants will be freed so long as they do not have any outstanding charges. These defendants had been awaiting trial following investigations by narcotics field officers who have been accused of planting evidence. At least 16 other cases connected with the squad have been dismissed.
Follow up to last Friday's post: The U.S. Supreme Court has decided to review the Maryland DNA sample case (King v. Maryland). We can expect a decision in June of 2013.
A former contractor for the federal court system in Maryland has been accused of taking bribes from defendants to provide inaccurate urine test results, tampering with witnesses and lying to a grand jury. The woman's former co-worker recently pleaded guilty to similar charges.
In another example of what-not-to-do, 21 people have been arrested by the NYPD for selling prescription drugs over the internet. Similar internet-based drug sale investigations and prosecutions are taking place across the country, including in Maryland.
People in Prince George's County know that federal and state law enforcement agencies are cracking down on drug use. There are stories in the news every day about people being arrested for having one kind of banned substance or another. Often times, that drug is marijuana. Even with all the arrests, the number of people smoking marijuana is rising, with 12.4 percent of eighth to 10th graders using marijuana.
There is one thing that officials with the department of corrections in every state are worried about: recidivism. When someone is arrested in St. Charles on a drug charge, convicted and sent to prison, there is a possibility that he or she will be back in prison within nine months. The more opportunity that individual has to work and thrive in a work environment, the less likely he or is to get in trouble again.
It's important that anyone who is pulled over by a police officer knows what his or her rights are. There are stories across Maryland of individuals getting pulled over by police for something relatively minor and then getting charged with drug crimes. There are specific constitutional rights that protect everyone from an overreaching police officer.
Since medical marijuana was first approved in 2010, there have been some changes in how the Washington, D.C., government looks at marijuana usage, so much so that the mayor recently said that District officials should keep an open mind about relaxing or decriminalizing recreational marijuana use. As it is, someone charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession can be sentenced to prison for six months and be forced to pay a $1,000 fine. This is double the punishment that someone would face if they had just crossed the border into Montgomery County.