SARASOTA MARIJUANA POSSESSION ATTORNEY
CALL THE ATTORNEYS WHO KNOW HOW TO FIGHT, AND BEAT, POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA CASES
Marijuana has come a long way. Once thought of as dangerous, it is now well-recognized that marijuana has medicinal benefits. In the State of Florida, though, the possession of marijuana without a prescription is still a crime.
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WHAT TO DO WHEN THE POLICE APPROACH YOU
Some tips from a criminal defense lawyer on how to stay out of jail (or to minimize the damage to your case if you do go to jail) when police approach you suspecting drug use.
BE QUIET! DO NOT ANSWER QUESTIONS
You are not going to talk your way out of a drug arrest! It's more likely that the more you talk, the more evidence you give the police to use against you. We regularly see cases where law enforcement does not have enough evidence to prove a possession charge, until the person starts talking!
ADMISSIONS CAN MEAN WORSE PLEA OFFERS
By making admissions people ruin their cases. An admission can make it very difficult to beat a case that might have been entirely beatable before the admission. When cases are stronger for the State the prosecutor will sometimes make a worse offer.
BE POLITE BUT STAND UP FOR YOUR RIGHTS!
In a very calm manner and with a polite voice tell the officer that you would like to speak with your attorney and will not be making any statements at this time. By doing this you are asserting your 5th Amendment rights and police are supposed to stop questioning you.
WHY SHOULD I BE POLITE?
You fight your case in court, not on the street! You have a chance at winning in court, you have no chance on the street. You would be surprised on how far being nice will get you: A cop putting in a good word to a prosecutor that you were polite and cooperative could be the difference between probation and prison.
ONE OF TWO THINGS ARE LIKELY TO HAPPEN
The officer will either: (1) not have developed probable cause to arrest you and will go away, or (2) The officer will arrest you.
BUT I WAS ARRESTED ANYWAY!
You can rest assured that if you are arrested your case will be much stronger and there will be a much better chance that your attorney will be able to work out a good deal for you than if you had made admissions and made it easier for the prosecutor to prove the case.
Misdemeanor Possession Of Marijuana
Possession of under 20 grams of marijuana is a first-degree misdemeanor criminal charge in the State of Florida punishable by up to one year in the county jail.
Felony Possession Of Marijuana
Possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana is a third-degree felony offense in the State of Florida punishable by up to five years in prison.
How times have changed: Now considered one of the worst movies ever made, Reefer Madness was a 1936 propaganda film about the dangers of cannabis use.
Driver’s License Suspension
If one is convicted of marijuana possession in Florida, the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) will suspend the person's driver's license for two years.
The Attorneys of Soler & Simon Have Handled Hundreds Of Possession Of Marijuana Cases
We will sit down with you and discuss your case in detail. In addition, we will launch an extensive investigation. We will look for areas where the police have violated the constitution and the law.
If a violation is found we will file motions to suppress the evidence and/or motions to dismiss the case. This could result in the case getting dropped or you getting a very good offer from the prosecutor.
WANT TO KNOW HOW TO GET A POSSESSION OF CANNABIS CASE DROPPED?
You suppress the evidence. Below are some common illegal things that law enforcement sometimes does that can result in evidence being suppressed.
Were you stopped illegally?
Often there are issues that turn up with the way the officer handled the initial detention of the person. For instance, many possession of marijuana cases start with a police officer stopping an automobile. The officer must have a legal basis to stop the car. If not, then all evidence found as a result of the illegal stop may be suppressed and the case will be dropped.
Were you detained too long?
Assuming the car is stopped for a valid traffic violation, the officer can only detain the driver for a reasonable period of time for the purpose of investigating and/or writing a traffic citation. If a person is detained too long, the marijuana found as a result of an unreasonable detention may be subject to suppression and the case dropped.
Was there no suspicion of wrongdoing?
In addition, there are situations where a police officer will illegally detain a passenger of a car with no reasonable suspicion of criminality. For instance, a car is stopped for running a red light. The officer may legally be allowed to briefly detain the driver. However, officers sometimes also detain the passengers without suspicion of criminality. The detention of the passengers may be illegal. If the detention is determined to be illegal. The evidence found after the illegal detention can be suppressed and the case will be dropped.
The above is just an example of a few commonly seen constitutional violations involving possession of drugs and marijuana cases.
Our constitution protects us from unreasonable police searches and seizures and there are many different ways that a person's rights can be violated. Be sure to call us to discuss your specific case.
Was the marijuana not on you?
If the marijuana was not found on the person, then there is usually a constructive possession issue. In a constructive possession situation, the state must prove knowledge (that the person knew the marijuana was there) as well as dominion and control.
Proving these two things is not as easy as one may think. If the state does not have specific evidence to prove knowledge and control, they may not be able to prove their case.
Beware Of The Probation Offer
Sometimes prosecutors will make low offers to a defendant at arraignment when they know they will likely not be able to successfully prove their case.
They will often offer probation with drug treatment, some community service hours, and random urinalysis. They do this knowing that, if they make a low offer, it is more likely that the defendant will accept the offer at arraignment BEFORE AN ATTORNEY HAS A CHANCE TO LOOK AT IT.
BE VERY CAREFUL before you accept a probation offer.
There are a tremendous amount of people sitting in the Sarasota County Jail because they violated their probation for some petty reason like they missed a probation appointment or did not complete community service hours in time. When someone violates probation the state almost always asks for jail, and usually a lot of it. If your case is not completely dropped, we may be able to get you an offer that does not involve probation.
Herb is the healing of a nation, alcohol is the destruction.