The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Criminal Defense, Family Law, and Mediation Services
www.kellyhigginslegal.com The Law Office of Kelly Higgins 512.839.3343
What’s in your Pockets?
An arrest for Marijuana or drugs almost always involves being searched by a law enforcement officer. Very often the outcome of the case turns on the legality of that search. The Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution is the foundation of your rights where police searches and seizures are concerned. Here’s what it says:
When the police want to know what’s in your pockets, it’s the Fourth Amendment that stops them from just reaching in to find out. When the police search anywhere without a warrant, that search can be challenged later in court, and any evidence seized as a result of an unconstitutional search can be suppressed. I take special pleasure challenging those searches. Call me to discuss the facts of your case and whether a challenge might make a difference in your case. 512-839-3343.
Q:Can a Possession case be dismissed?
A: Yes. There are a number of ways to win a dismissal. If the evidence is excluded from the case after a suppression hearing, the case will almost always be dismissed. Alternatively,
the case may be dismissed in exchange for the defendant completing classes, community service, or other particular conditions.
Q:Do I have to agree to allow a law enforcement officer to search me, my house, or my car?
A: No. In fact, it’s almost never a good idea, even if you know you have no contraband. The Fourth Amendment makes your right to be free from unwarranted searches plain.
Q:Can the police search your car even if you don’t consent?
A: In some circumstances, the police can search without your consent. While this is very dependent on the facts of your case, one common way this occurs is during a valid traffic
stop. If the officer smells the odor of marijuana wafting from the car, he can cite that as probable cause to believe there is marijuana in the car, and the court will likely agree.
Q: Are there other consequences for a conviction for possession of marijuana or controlled substances?
A: Yes. A Driver’s License suspension is likely. Some convictions affect your ability to get financial aid for school. And of course any conviction appears on your record forever.
Q:“Is there anything in your car I should know about?”
A: No Sir, Officer.
Q:“Mind if I have a look around inside your car?”
A:I’m afraid I couldn’t consent to that, Officer. My lawyer, Kelly Higgins, whose phone number is 512-839-3343, told me I should call him if I was ever asked that question. May I
call him now?
(If you give this answer on the recording of the traffic stop, I will reduce your fee by one half.)