Although attitudes towards the use of drugs have softened in some parts of the country, Texas still maintains a strong stance when it comes to enforcing state and federal drug laws. This is especially true when it comes to the possession of large quantities of drugs, as well as the transportation and sale of marijuana, narcotics, opioids and other dangerous and controlled substances.
If you’ve been arrested on a drug offense in San Antonio and Bexar County
If you have been arrested on a drug offense, much of your defense strategy will be determined by what kind of drug is involved, how much is involved, and what the circumstances of the case are. In other words, getting caught smoking a joint is not going to be treated the same way as getting popped transporting several pounds of methamphetamines.
In some instances, with the help of a skilled attorney such as Derek W. Emmons, you may be able to work with the court system to be placed into some kind of a drug diversion program for minor offenses. Upon successful completion, all charges and records of those charges may be dismissed, leaving you with a clean record so that you do not continue to pay the price for many years to come.
For the vast majority of drug charges, your attorney will probably be able to strike a plea bargain with the courts. This may allow you to pay a penalty for a lesser charge, such as having a felony reduced to a misdemeanor, serve less time or pay less of a fine than you would if you chose to go to trial and lost. Courts are often amenable to plea bargains because it frees up their resources so they can focus on larger crimes that have more serious and sweeping consequences.
Possible drug offense defenses
If you do go to trial, your attorney may be able to employ several possible defenses.
You could claim you were subject to an unreasonable search or seizure. Police are bound by law to follow certain procedures that involve getting a warrant, or they must have probable cause to suspect you are in possession, transporting or selling drugs. They cannot search you, your home, or your car whenever they feel like it.
You can claim that the drugs are not yours by way of constructive possession. This means that you did not actively possess the drugs on your person, but that you might have had some control over them because they were in or on your property, whether it’s a car, your home, a gym bag, a locker or anything else of yours.
At other times, you may be able to claim that what was found was not actually a controlled substance. Sometimes, labs cannot conclusively conclude that what you had was a controlled substance, or in other instances, the drugs in question may be misplaced in the booking process.
The Law Office of Derek W. Emmons serves clients in San Antonio and surrounding Texas communities.