In true Texas fashion, Texas law provides no leniency, and drug possession of any kind—even for marijuana, which is now legal in many states—can and will result in jail time and a fine. For the possession of controlled substances, a person stands to lose 180 days of his or her life to jail time and an additional $2,000 in fines. For many people, a punishment such as this can be devastating to their careers, their relationships, and their futures. At Udeshi Clark & Associates, our Dallas criminal defense attorneys aim to protect the innocent by providing aggressive legal representation in light of criminal charges. If you or a loved one was wrongfully charged with drug possession, do not panic. Reach out to the knowledgeable attorneys at our Dallas criminal defense firm today.
Understand the Charges Brought Against You
As with any other criminal matter in the United States, the burden of proof rests with the prosecution to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. For them, that involves proving two things:
- That you knew the substance in question was an illicit drug or controlled substance; and
- That you were aware that the substance was in your possession or on your property.
While each of these points can be relatively difficult for the prosecution to prove when pressed for evidence, they can always fall back on the “constructive possession” charge. Constructive possession occurs when an illegal substance is indirectly in a person’s possession. For instance, say that your teenaged child had a stash of marijuana hidden in the basement of your home. Police enter after you place a phone call for suspected burglary and they find the marijuana. You had no idea that it was there, but because it was in your home, you, your son, and your spouse if applicable could be charged with possession. The same principle applies for individuals who had drugs in the trunk of their car but did not know about them. Because the vehicle belongs to them, they could be found guilty of possession.
Obviously, the theory of constructive possession goes against point two—that you knew beyond a reasonable doubt that there were controlled substances on your property—but the law works in convoluted ways. For this reason, it is so important that you have an attorney who fully understands the law to fight on your behalf.
Your Possible Defenses to Drug Possession Charges in Dallas
In order to build a strong defense to the charges brought against you, our Dallas criminal defense lawyers will need to know the specifics surrounding your case. For example, if the drugs were not yours but were merely in your vehicle, we could be able to establish that the drugs in question did not belong to you and that you were unaware of their presence. The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the drugs in question were yours, but by disputing that fact, you can plant the seed of doubt, which is often all you need to do to have the charges dropped.
Another defense route you may have is to prove that the manner in which the drugs were found was against the law. If the drugs were found during an illegal search and seizure, all evidence gathered is inadmissible, even including the drugs. Without evidence, there is no charge. If your vehicle was stopped for no apparent reason—you were not speeding, you did not have a taillight out, and your plates were good—and then you were searched during that stop, this may be another reason to have all charges dropped.
If you or a loved one was charged with drug possession in Dallas, Texas, we understand that you may be feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and scared. These are normal things to feel in the face of a criminal charge. However, the best thing you can do at this stage is to remain calm and contact a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney such as those at Udeshi Clark & Associates. To schedule your free consultation, call 469-906-2226 today.
(image courtesy of Shane Rounce)