When you are facing drug charges in North Carolina, you need a qualified attorney to help you fight back. Here are the most common defenses that are effective in helping those charged avoid stiff penalties.
The best way to figure out which defense strategy is most likely to lead to a positive outcome in your specific case is to work with a skilled North Carolina drug crimes attorney.
Improper Police Procedure
The police must follow protocol when making drug crime arrests. If they fail to use the right procedures, you may be able to avoid the high fines and prison sentences associated with drug crime convictions.
When you are pulled over or stopped on the street, the police must have probable cause to make an arrest. If your attorney can prove that the police targeted you on an unfair bias, your charges could be dropped.
The Fourth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution protects your rights to lawful search and seizure. If the police violated your rights, any evidence they obtained without a warrant cannot be used against you in court.
Your lawyer could also contest your arrest if the police used unreasonably harsh or abusive actions against you, or if they made unreasonable threats to force you to confess.
The police must also read your Miranda rights to you at the time of arrest. This right is protected under the Fifth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution, and your attorney can fight your charges if your rights were violated.
Lack of Knowledge
If you didn’t know that drugs were in your possession at the time of your arrest, you may be able to use this defense. Whether you delivered a package, borrowed a vehicle, or wore clothing that you didn’t realize contained illegal substances, a knowledgeable Greensboro criminal lawyer can put this defense to work for you.
Lack of Possession
Even if you are charged with drug possession, you can fight the charges if you can prove that you did not actually possess them. For example, if the police pulled you over and found marijuana in the vehicle occupied by you and several other passengers, it can be difficult to prove who possessed the drugs.
Substance Is Not Illegal
Sometimes police seize what they believe to be illegal substances, but the crime lab tests prove otherwise. You will not face charges if the substance in question is not in fact illegal.
Actual Drugs Not Present
When the prosecuting attorney presents drugs in court as evidence against you, they must match the drugs seized at the time of arrest or search. If the drugs aren’t exactly the same, you cannot face charges for possessing or distributing them.
Coercion or Duress
If someone coerced or threatened harm against you or your loved ones unless you complied with their demands to handle drugs, you can use this defense to get your charges reduced or dropped.
In police sting operations, sometimes police reach outside their limitations and force people to purchase drugs when they would not have purchased them otherwise. This is illegal and can be used as a defense in court.
These are just a few of the possible strategies that skilled drug crime attorneys have been able to successfully apply to these types of cases. Your best chance at winning your case comes down to choosing the best defense for your specific situation – something best left to an experienced professional.