If you’re charged with drug possession, there are ways your attorney can defend you – but every case is different, which means you’ll have to talk to your drug crime defense attorney about the specifics. However, these are some of the defenses your attorney might explore:
- Unwitting possession
- Lack of possession
- Unlawful search and seizure
Drug Possession Defenses
For most people charged with drug possession, the best idea is to get advice from an attorney. Your lawyer will be able to zero in on what happened and create a defense strategy that gets you the best possible outcome. Once you explain your situation to your lawyer, he can start figuring out what type of defense to use to help you.
Unwitting possession means you didn’t know you had the drugs. If you’re delivering a pizza, for example, and the person who made the pizza tucked a bag of pot beneath it and you didn’t know it was there, your lawyer can argue that you’re not responsible for possessing them. Likewise, if you buy a house and there’s a huge stash of heroin beneath the floor boards that was hidden there years ago, your attorney will let the court know that you never knew it was there.
Lack of Possession
In some cases, attorneys can argue that the person arrested for drug possession didn’t actually have any drugs at all. This might come into play if, for example, you were pulled over in a car where the police found drugs – but they didn’t find them in your pockets or in your bag.
The prosecutor is responsible for proving that the drugs were yours, which can be tough if the police didn’t take them away from you specifically.
Unlawful Search and Seizure
Everyone has the right to due process, and part of that is the fact that the state of Illinois must follow the rules about using evidence against you. If the drugs being used as evidence against you were picked up during an illegal search or seizure (that means the police didn’t do the right thing when they picked them up), your attorney might be able to argue that in your favor.
Note: When police see drugs in plain view – like on your dashboard or on the seat beside you – they can take them and use them as evidence against you. However, if they violated your rights and then discovered the drugs (like by popping a lock on a suitcase that was in your trunk without your consent), the evidence they have might be inadmissible. Again, though, every case is different!
If police made you commit a crime you wouldn’t have otherwise committed, like passing drugs to someone else in order to catch the person buying them, you could have an entrapment defense. Entrapment occurs when police trick you or induce you into doing something wrong – something that you wouldn’t have done under ordinary circumstances.
Do You Need to Talk to a Lawyer About Drug Possession Defenses?
If you’re charged with a drug crime in Chicago, we may be able to help you. Call us right now at 847-920-4540 for a free case review – we’ll ask you some questions and start building a strategy that gets you the best possible outcome.