Why you can face charges for drugs that definitely weren’t yours

On Behalf of | Jul 20, 2020 | Criminal Defense |

Maybe you hosted a party where not just your friends but a bunch of random people showed up. Perhaps you decided you were going to be the one to drive when you and a group of friends headed out of town for a concert or road trip. Then, law enforcement officers get involved.

Maybe you get pulled over for speeding, or perhaps a neighbor calls to complain that your party has become too loud. When officers searched, they eventually find evidence of drugs, possibly a baggie or container of drugs. It’s possible that you can wind up facing drug possession charges even though you know that those drugs weren’t yours.

Officers may not know who the drugs belong to

Sometimes, drug possession is very easy for law enforcement or prosecutors to establish. If officers search someone and find drugs in their pocket or purse, it is almost impossible for the individual to deny awareness of those items.

However, when police find drugs in a home or a vehicle and no one claims them, things can quickly become more complicated. Unfortunately, it is a common practice for officers to assume that the person who owned the property or the vehicle is the one who also had the drugs. In reality, a passenger or a visitor could easily have tossed or hidden their drugs as soon as law enforcement arrived in order to avoid getting in trouble.

The state uses constructive possession in some drug cases

Officers may use constructive possession, in which they attempt to prove that you were aware of and had control over the drugs, in order to bring charges against you. That’s a lot to prove, and it will potentially give you options for establishing a criminal defense strategy.

Fighting allegations of constructive possession can help you push back against unfounded drug charges.