Drug Possession Cases Arising From Traffic Stops in Virginia Beach

It is really important to have a drug defense lawyer who can carefully analyze the constitutional issues and your case to make sure that none of your rights were violated and if they were, then make sure that illegally-obtained evidence is not admitted.

In Virginia Beach, most possession cases start with a routine traffic stop or a property search. The Fourth Amendment is often violated right here in the very beginning of the incident, which can then make it possible to prevent the evidence obtained from the stop from being admitted into evidence in trial. This often times results in the case being dismissed altogether.

Police officers can be careless sometimes or can make mistakes in their procedures. For a search to be valid under the fourth amendment, there has to be either a valid warrant, consent of the defendant or probable cause.

Other constitutional issues arise when a defendant says something in the interview or while he is being interrogated and then the Fifth Amendment or Sixth Amendment right to counsel gets violated. Any statements that are made after the arrest, but without having had Miranda Rights read are not admissible in court and cannot be used against the defendant later on. This can also result in more evidence that doesn’t get to be admitted at the trial, which often results in the whole case being dismissed.

Biggest Mistakes to Avoid in Traffic Stop Drug Possession Cases

The biggest mistake to avoid in drug possession cases is building the case for the other side. People constantly blow a case by believing that honesty is the best policy and then handing over the drugs and admitting ownership of them. This pretty much put the nail in the defendant’s own coffin with regard to the case.

The best thing to do once you are pulled over and the police officer says something like, “Oh, I see marijuana in your car” or “I smell marijuana” is to say that you don’t want to answer any questions and let them search your vehicle and build the case against you without your help.

This doesn’t mean that you should consent to a search. However, the second that the officer smells the marijuana or sees it in plain view, they no longer need your consent to search the vehicle. Sometimes defendants try to offer up excuses at this point, in hopes of convincing the officer not to search or to let them go. It’s too late once they have secured their probable cause, so rather than adding more fuel for their testimony later on, its best to just be polite and cooperative and not give them more than they already have.