When police stop and search you for drugs, you have rights that deserve protecting whether they find any illegal substances or not. Far too often, law enforcement does not operate as if suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, which is a core principle of our legal system.
In many cases, arresting officers break the law in the course of allegedly upholding the law. They bend the rules to allow them to charge a suspect or violate a suspect’s rights during an interaction. If you believe that a police officer violated your rights or broke the law while charging you with a drug crime, you should examine your legal options.
It is unwise to waste valuable time and effort waiting to build your defense, since this only gives the prosecution more time to build their case against you. Instead, you should begin building your defense immediately to ensure that your rights and privileges remain safe.
Weak evidence of a crime
It is common for police to charge suspects with drug crimes on very weak or circumstantial evidence. This may occur if police search your home and find drugs which do not necessarily belong to you. For instance, if you recently hosted a party in your home, it is possible that someone else left the drugs there, which weakens the case against you.
Even if you feel like the evidence against you is strong, you should examine it closely. You may have more defensive options than you realize.
Breaking the law to uphold the law
Sometimes, police break the law they swear to uphold in the process of making an arrest or performing a search. Regardless of the evidence they may collect against a suspect, breaking the law or violating a suspect’s rights is not an acceptable way to enforce the law, and deserves direct challenging when it is possible.
If an officer pulls you over and searches your vehicle without your consent and without any valid reason to perform a search, this may be a violation of your rights. Police may not search a vehicle without probable cause or without your consent. It is wise to refuse a search if an officer asks to perform one. If an officer searches your vehicle without proper justification, it is strong grounds to have the charges thrown out altogether.
Similarly, if police violate you physically during the interaction, it is also wise to examine this closely. While physical force is allowed during an arrest, many officers abuse this power and must have that power kept in check.
No matter how your charges arise, you must begin building a strategy to protect yourself as soon as you can. The sooner you begin, the more options you have for keeping your rights protected and your future secure.