Constitutional Issues in Ft. Lauderdale Drug Cases

There a lot of constitutional issues that may arise in a Fort Lauderdale drug case that can sometimes allow an individual to face lesser penalties. If you have been charged with a drug crime and believe that your rights may have been violated, consult with an experienced drug lawyer as soon as possible.

An experienced attorney can help uncover any potential constitutional issues in Ft. Lauderdale drug cases that may be present in your case to help lessen any potential consequences. The process of looking for constitutional issues during a Ft Lauderdale drug arrest is referred to as a motion to suppress. If there was probable cause to make an arrest, it can be reviewed by a judge after a hearing.

Miranda Rights

The Fifth Amendment would cover a situation where somebody is in custody not necessarily arrested. If law enforcement failed to advise an individual of their rights, the fifth amendment can address such constitutional issues in Ft. Lauderdale drug cases. Common rights law enforcement may fail to divulge include the individual’s right to remain silent and have an attorney present when law enforcement is asking questions. This analysis stems from the landmark United State Supreme Court Miranda case, that is why it is commonly known as an individual’s Miranda warnings.

Fourth Amendment Violations

A lot of drug cases in Fort Lauderdale stem from contact with law enforcement. The most common contact occurs during traffic stops. That calls into question an analysis of the Fourth Amendment, which protects all citizens from unlawful searches and seizures. What that means is that a police officer needs a legal reason to stop a vehicle. They can not pull somebody aside based on a hunch, because they are bored, or have a gut feeling that somebody is up to no good.

Each drug case that resulted or starts from a traffic stop needs to be analyzed from the Fourth Amendment standpoint to make sure that the police acted lawfully as it relates to somebody’s freedom of movement. Under the Fourth Amendment, the stop falls under an unlawful seizure because that person is being prohibited from moving freely. When law enforcement enters an individual’s vehicle or enters an individual’s house without a warrant, the best legal practice or law enforcement practice is to obtain a warrant to search somebody’s home or search somebody’s vehicle. There are warrant exceptions under the law, but probable cause is the biggest one. Further constitutional issues in Ft. Lauderdale drug cases that may impact an individual’s charge can be best explained by an attorney.

Probable Cause

In most cases involving traffic stops, law enforcement has no prior knowledge of the individual prior to the traffic stop, so they would not have a warrant. Many of these cases are also analyzed regarding whether law enforcement abuses their powers in exercising a lawful search of an individual’s car. The odor of cannabis, for example, would give law enforcement probable cause to search or enter an individual’s vehicle without their permission.

Observing something in plain view from a lawful vantage point would give law enforcement a reason to enter somebody’s vehicle without their permission. It is common that a police officer after a traffic stop would ask somebody for their permission to enter or search their vehicle. If the individual gives law enforcement permission to do that, then they do not need a warrant or any of those other warrant exceptions. This void can bar a lawyer from presenting any constitutional issues in Ft. Lauderdale drug cases that may help the potential client.

Refusing a Search

A lot of people feel that they cannot say no to a law enforcement officer or police officer when they are asked to give them permission to search the person’s vehicle. However, the Constitution provides that a person can say no. They do not have to give the police permission to search or enter their vehicle or their home. Law enforcement may, however, have the legal ability to do that without their permission.

In situations where there is no warrant and there are no known or recognizable warrant exceptions, or if an individual denies law enforcement’s request to enter a vehicle, search a vehicle, enter a house, if they do it anyway, there is a chance that the search could be thrown out. This is based on what is called a motion to suppress. A judge in Fort Lauderdale can determine the validity of this evidence.

Role of a Lawyer

Presenting constitutional issues in Ft. Lauderdale drug cases, allow attorneys to eliminate, suppress, or throw out an individual’s confession or admission. In doing this, an individual’s attorney may limit the prosecutor’s ability to go forward with a drug related case in Fort Lauderdale or prove the charges of both. It might result in the dismissal of a charge or result in a lesser charge, a reduction of charge, or certainly a much better resolution or much lighter sentence. If that particular incriminating evidence can be thrown out and/or scrutinized with another constitutional argument that there has been a Fifth Amendment violation. In drug cases, lawyers look at whether law enforcement is engaged in any type of deceptive behavior. Any violations with respect to confidential informants, if law enforcement was in the business of manufacturing their own drugs, a lot of constitutional issues and drug related cases in Fort Lauderdale.

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