Tips and defense strategies for beating charges for drug possession in Texas
After being charged with drug possession in Texas, the first thing you should do is contact an experienced defense attorney. When you talk with the attorney, you need to explain the type of drug that you were in possession of, and if it was on your person or only on your property, such as in your vehicle.
If you didn’t have drugs in your possession, then you need to be honest about who the drugs belonged to at the time you were charged. With the assistance of an attorney, you can sometimes beat a drug possession charge when you go to court.
The following arguments are some of the most common defense strategies when it comes to drug possession charges in Texas.
Improper search and seizure process
If an officer suspects that you could have drugs in your possession, then the officer will likely ask to search your vehicle, clothing or other items that you possess. Due process is granted because of the Fourth Amendment, which covers lawful searches and seizures.
When an officer approaches you to conduct a search, it’s to be done in a professional manner and in a specific way so that it doesn’t go against the law. If drugs are seen directly in your possession, then the officer can take those items and charge you with possession. This includes drugs that are seen on a table in your home or if they are seen on a seat in your car—even if they aren’t yours.
If an officer has to use tools to look inside your car or other items that you possess and finds drugs, then a defense of an illegal search and seizure could be used in court. If the court finds that the search was illegal, then any drugs found usually aren’t entered into evidence. When there is no other evidence against you, then the court tends to dismiss the charges.
Drugs belong to another person
Another common defense is claiming that the drugs belonged to someone else. If you’re in the car with other people or if you’re at home with others when the officers find drugs, then you could be charged with possession—unless someone else comes forward and admits that the drugs belong to them.
Keep in mind that if someone has a warrant for arrest or has been in trouble with the law before, then it’s likely the person won’t admit to possessing the drugs, which would mean that you would be the one charged even though they aren’t yours.
If you share a home with someone and drugs are found, a defense could be that you didn’t know that the other person had drugs or that you were unaware that they were in your home.
Drugs aren’t real
Sometimes, an officer might think that a substance is a drug when it’s really something else. Your attorney can order an analysis of the substance to determine if it’s really a drug or not. If the substance isn’t a drug, then the charges can usually be dismissed.
A similar defense could be that the crime lab or the arresting department lost the drugs in question or misplaced them before they were tested or before going to court. This would mean that the officer or the crime lab would rely on statements made by the arresting officer in order to make a claim against you.
It would then be the officer’s word against your own. If there is no concrete proof that you were in possession of a drug, then your attorney could move to have the charges dismissed.
Illegal substances were planted items
Unfortunately, there are times when someone else could plant drugs in your possession so that you would be charged. Your attorney would need to have a substantial amount of proof or ways to obtain proof that the drugs were planted in order to use this defense, but it’s possible.
Your attorney could request that any complaints be released so that everyone can see the names of those who are on the list. If the names of the arresting officials are on the list or connected to those who are on the list, then the evidence could be thrown out and the charges dismissed.
Defendant has a prescription
If you’re able to prove that you can legally have those drugs in your possession, then you could beat a possession charge. The bottle would need to have your name on it as well as a recent date for getting the prescription filled.
If the bottle doesn’t have a label, then you could be charged with possession, but you might be able to beat the charge if you’re able to get enough information from your doctor or pharmacist to give to the court.