Depending on the type of crime committed, penalties may be classified as either misdemeanors or felonies, and are subject to varying degrees of severity.
Common drug crimes involve the following:
Are you facing drug possession charges in Benton County? You are probably experiencing anxiety, confusion, and worry over your future, and rightly so. Arkansas law carries severe penalties for those convicted of drug crimes, whether it involves trafficking, selling, or possession. Crimes involving prescription drugs, meth, heroin, cocaine, marijuana and other drugs can significantly impact your future. With the right defense, your future can be aggressively protected. At Lucas Law Firm we are dedicated to each of our clients, and treat them with the respect and individual attention necessary to obtain the best possible outcomes on their behalf.
Actual possession occurs when a law enforcement officer finds drugs on your person, for instance, in a shirt pocket. Whether you own the drug is not relevant for the purposes of this charge. For example, if you borrowed a coat from a friend who had a controlled substance such as cannabis in his or her pocket, the fact that it is not yours is not a defense to possession charges. The best way to challenge an actual possession charge is to question the stop and search that resulted in the police finding drugs on your person. A law enforcement officer must have reasonable suspicion that you are about to commit, or have committed, a crime in order to lawfully stop you. This has to be more than a hunch. Once the officer has reasonable suspicion to stop you, he or she must have probable cause to conduct a search. If he or she does not have probable cause to conduct a search, then the charges can be dismissed.
Constructive possession occurs when you are facing possession charges for drugs that were not on your person, but located in another place or common area. The prosecutor must prove that you knew the drugs were in that specific location and you had the ability to exercise control over them. You may be charged with constructive possession if you were a passenger in a vehicle where drugs were found in the glove compartment or trunk. A charge of constructive possession can be challenged by questioning the stop and search, as with an actual possession charge. It can also be challenged that the prosecutor did not establish all of the necessary elements of constructive possession beyond a reasonable doubt.
Please call us at (479) 372-1777 if you cannot find an answer to your question.
If you have been charged with drug possession you need to contact our office immediately for a free consultation. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you find out your rights and will significantly improve your chances of a positive outcome. Speaking with an attorney is the best way to protect yourself in this situation.
You are not required to talk to the police and should exercise your right to remain silent until you can talk with an experienced criminal defense attorney. The police will most likely take you into custody and are required to inform you of your right to remain silent and to obtain legal representation.
A lawyer can raise several defenses on your behalf depending on the facts of your case. Some common defenses include lack of reasonable suspicion or probable cause, unconstitutional search and seizure, and lack of evidence that you had actual or constructive possession over the controlled substance. Law enforcement must have probable cause in order to conduct a warrantless search or make an arrest, or they must have your consent. If law enforcement does not meet these requirements when they conduct a search or make an arrest, then they have violated your Fourth Amendment rights and the evidence they find must be thrown out of court.
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