Drug cases often turn on whether the defendant was in possession of a controlled substance or paraphernalia, and most people think this requires the prosecution to show that the defendant had something on their person. But there are actually two types of possession as far as the law is concerned, and either one of them can cause you to face a possession charge. Understanding the different types of possession, as the law defines both, will help you to properly defend the charges against you.
The two types of possession for drug cases include:
- Actual possession: this means the defendant actually had the item or drug on them, personally. This happens most frequently when drugs are found in your pockets, in a cup or other container you are holding, or in your bare hands.
- Constructive possession: this means the defendant did not have the item or drug on their person, but had easy access to the item or drug in question. This type of possession can occur when you are driving and there are drugs or drug paraphernalia in the backseat, the glove box, or under the driver’s seat. The key here is that the person being charged can quickly and easily access the banned substance.
With constructive possession it is also easy to be charged with other types of violations, such as a traffic infraction or even a DUI, especially if the items are found while you are pulled over in your car. This is because when the police pull you over for speeding and suspect you have been drinking and also spot things in your car, they will articulate a reason to do a search. When things are found as a result of the search, you can face a multitude of charges. In order to successfully these types of cases you first want to look at whether the stop was valid, if not you may be able to have the search results thrown out. You should also challenge the search itself and argue there was no legal basis for having the search performed. Our team of DUI defense attorneys has experience in cases with multiple charges and is ready to help defend you today.
For more information about criminal defense, call an experienced defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. We offer an initial consultation for no charge, and look forward to working with you