3 Defenses Against Drug Possession Charges in New York
Some people assume the penalties for drug possession in New York aren’t that severe because it’s such a common offense. But depending on the type of substance allegedly found in your possession and the amount, a conviction could have life-changing consequences including thousands of dollars in fines, incarceration, drug testing, probation, and electronic monitoring.
Fortunately, just because you’re facing charges doesn’t mean a conviction is inevitable. Depending on the facts surrounding your arrest, there may be a defense that leads to reduced charges or penalties or the outright dismissal of your case.
To discuss the defense strategies that apply to your situation, contact LoTempio P.C. Law Group for a free consultation. Our team of experts can investigate your arrest to identify any procedural errors made by law enforcement that might contribute to your defense. Call 716-855-3761 to speak with a criminal attorney in New York today.
Read on to learn about a few possible defenses against drug possession charges:
1. Illegal Search and Seizure
The Fourth Amendment protects Americans from unlawful searches and seizures. That means police officers cannot search you without a warrant or probable cause.
Let’s assume, for example, that your vehicle was pulled over and the officer searched it without probable cause or a warrant. Any evidence gathered during this unlawful search—including illegal drugs—cannot be used against you in court, so your drug possession charges would most likely be dismissed.
2. Dominion and Control
If the drugs were not actually on your person at the time of arrest, the prosecutor must prove dominion and control instead, which means you had control over the area where the substance was found. The prosecutor must prove that you had both the knowledge and ability to exercise control over the person or property from whom the drugs were seized. Therefore, proving that you were unaware of the substance on your property may be a viable defense depending on the circumstances. This defense may apply if you were hosting a guest who was in possession of illegal drugs or if your roommate brought drugs into your home and police found them during a search.
3. Medical Marijuana Exception
This defense only applies to charges for the possession of marijuana. People with qualifying conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, cancer, and HIV, are allowed to carry a 30-day supply of marijuana; however, they are not allowed to use marijuana in public, and they must carry their registry ID card when they possess it.
Call 716-855-3761 to Speak with a Criminal Defense Lawyer in New York
If you are facing charges for drug possession, turn to a criminal defense attorney at LoTempio P.C. Law Group. With more than 200 years of combined experience, our lawyers have the knowledge and legal strategies to help you fight for the best possible outcome for your case. Call 716-855-3761 or fill out our Contact Form to schedule a free consultation with one of our strategic New York criminal defense lawyers.