5 Mistakes to Avoid When Facing Drug Possession Charges
According to the 2019 FBI’s Crime in The United States Annual Report, there were 1,558,862 arrests for drug violations nationwide that year. Of these, 87% (or 1,351,533) were for possession of a controlled substance. That means an overwhelming number of Americans are facing serious legal ramifications related to drugs. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you fight the drug possession charges leveled against you.
It is quite easy to panic and let emotions take over when arrested for possession. This may lead to poor judgment and decision-making that can jeopardize your case. Here are five common mistakes to avoid when facing drug possession charges.
1. Assuming That It's Not a Big Deal
In Ohio, law enforcement agencies arrest over 20,000 people for cannabis possession in an average year. Drug possession charges and arrests have become fairly common, making defenders wrongfully assume that it's not as serious as it used to be. While consequences of drug-related convictions may vary by state, they may have major implications on your life.
Jail time should not be your only concern. You may also lose out on government programs, employment opportunities, and public housing, among many others. Don't make light of these drug possession charges and find an attorney to represent you.
2. Not Having an Attorney Present
Ohio felony drug possession laws are incredibly complex. It would not be wise to assume that you can handle it on your own. It's surprisingly easy to self-incriminate, with the result having a significant impact on your life. Avoid speaking to law enforcement without your attorney present. It is a common pitfall, especially for minors, who think they can talk their way out of it.
3. Consenting To a Search
It's the job of the law enforcement officers to find evidence that will lead to a conviction. The investigators may ask to access your vehicle or property to search when examining a case involving drug charges. Consenting to a search without your attorney present is a mistake as any evidence collected cannot be challenged in drug court. A criminal defense lawyer will ensure that you are not unfairly influenced by police to consent to searches without them having a valid warrant.
4. Making Unnecessary Admissions
It's essential to remain respectful and cooperative when facing arrests for drug possession. However, making unnecessary and incriminating admissions to the police can be damaging for your defense. Don’t answer any questions until your lawyer is present. As you interact with the law enforcement officers, remain calm and courteous, but don't offer any more information than is necessary.
5. Choosing the First Attorney You Come Across
Most people are often in distress at the mention of the drug possession charges. Parents with teens arrested with a drug charge will hastily pick the first attorney they come across. It's essential to remain calm, taking time to pick the right criminal defense lawyer to represent you or your child. You need an attorney that has a proven success rate in handling similar cases.
Time to Get an Attorney
You shouldn't take your drug possession charges lightly. As you head out to search for an experienced attorney to represent you, avoid making your case worse by not speaking until they arrive. If you are facing a felony drug charge in Columbus, OH, contact Wolfe Law Group to schedule your free consultation.