The Government has the burden of proof and they have to prove their case in order to get a conviction; analyzing their case to find any procedural issues, constitutional issues, or evidentiary issues to find weak spots. An experienced drug possession attorney will try to deconstruct or chip away at the Government’s case through the discovery process by taking depositions, filing Motions to Suppress Evidence, Motions to Exclude Evidence, Motions to Suppress Traffic Stop, Unlawful Seizures and Arrests.
Role of an Individual in Preparing the Defense
Before preparing a Ft Lauderdale drug possession defense, individuals have the right to remain silent and not testify, not call any witnesses, or present any evidence if they do not want to. A defense attorney can analyze the case to determine if there is any evidence that can be used from the defense perspective, whether it be an eye witness or documentation.
What really comes to mind in a drug possession case is a lot of people have valid prescriptions for scheduled drugs, but they might not have it in their prescription bottle or do not have the prescription on them. That is an example of something to provide to the prosecutor and the State Attorney’s Office to defend a charge or an allegation of unlawful drug possession in Fort Lauderdale.
It is a combination of trying to deconstruct or chip away at the Government’s case and, from the defense position, determine the strength of the Government’s case via testimony, documentation, other forms of evidence, surveillance, or anything that could be helpful. A defense could be formed utilizing those means as well.
Considering Relevant Evidence
Creating Ft Lauderdale drug possession defenses requires the attorney to analyze and scrutinize through constitutional analysis. These issues consist of unlawful searches and seizures; unlawful arrests; issues regarding application, issuance, and executions of search warrants; valid Motions to Suppress, Exclude Evidence; and entrapment issues. Each case really takes on a life of its own with no standard answer.
An experienced defense firm will analyze every case with a custom-tailored approach, with a specific inspection for constitutional violations and procedural issues. They would point out any weaknesses to a prosecutor’s case and attempt to discourage them from filing a charge against their client, and to persuade them to drop the charge after it has been filed. Perhaps the defense attorney can convince a prosecutor to reduce a drug charge or advocate and argue for the least punitive/most reasonable sentence.
Preparing for Trial
If all else fails, the defense team will be ready for trial before a jury in the hopes of a not-guilty verdict. The only evidence they would look for at this point would be evidence that would support a valid legal defense. Any evidence that would diminish the Government’s charge or help in mounting the defense via physical evidence or witness testimony.
Valid prescription evidence in a Ft Lauderdale drug possession defense would be something that would be imperative. The defense attorney would need to know whose car it was, what belongings were in the vehicle, if there were any other occupants, and who sat where. These facts are important to establish in order to determine whether or not the government has a strong or weak argument in a constructive possession case.
Constitutional Issues in Drug Possession Cases
Issues relating to search warrants are probably the most common in negotiating Fort Lauderdale drug possession charges. There are more search warrants in drug-related cases so there are more opportunities to challenge whether or not the warrant was lawful or not. The defense attorney can attack the constitutionality of the warrant. They can call into question whether or not it should have been issued based on a Fourth Amendment analysis if there were sufficient facts presented to the judge who signed off on the search warrant.
Some general constitutional issues that basically permeate a lot of criminal cases are issues related to traffic stops, unlawful seizures, and issues relating to the unlawful searches. Again, those are Fourth Amendment analyses.
Potential violations regarding the Fifth Amendment include:
- Someone’s right to remain silent
- The individual was read their Miranda rights
- Whether statements can be used against them
- Exclusion via a Motion to Suppress
With the assistance of an experienced defense attorney, it is possible to exclude incriminating statements when there has been Fifth Amendment violations as analyzed under the Constitution.
Risk of Self-Representation
An individual representing themselves is usually not a good idea. Nor is it a good idea to attempt negotiating Fort Lauderdale drug possession charges before consulting an attorney. Being contacted by law enforcement is usually not a good thing. If an individual at least contacts an attorney early on, they can reduce the risk of facing the charge altogether and thereby would reduce their economic considerations.
Importance of Contacting a Lawyer
Most people do not know what their rights are, specifically regarding what they have to do and what they do not have to do. Some people feel that if the police want to talk to them, they have to answer their questions. Individuals have the right to remain silent via the United States Constitution. Contacting a lawyer for a Ft Lauderdale drug possession defense early on would allow an individual to be educated on that issue and not give the Government or a Police Officer evidence that would incriminate them.
Most law firms that specialize in criminal defense have a flat fee schedule. The legal fee that people pay to be represented by them on drug cases is called a flat fee. The definition of a flat fee means that if a person faces a particular charge, there is a one-time fee for such representation. The law firm will usually work with the individual and offer payment plans.
If a person hires a drug possession defense attorney on the first day versus the 30th day of any type of involvement, it usually is the same fee. The person gets the attorney representing them for a longer period of time for the same money, so there is really no reason why an individual would not retain an attorney sooner as opposed to later. If it is a situation where somebody has a question, most defense law firms offer free initial consultations. There really is no reason why somebody would not want to contact an attorney earlier as opposed to later; it is really a wise move to do so.