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Possession of Marijuana In A Motor Vehicle
Charged With Marijuana in a Motor Vehicle Defense Attorney
The largest percentage of marijuana cases arise out of operation of a motor vehicle. The classic scenario is a routine traffic stop that mushrooms into a search and seizure of marijuana and/or marijuana paraphernalia. The truth is, however, that motorists are stopped without reasonable suspicion of a motor vehicle violation all the time and, worse yet, their car or truck searched contrary to the Fourth Amendment. An experienced criminal lawyer like those at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can insure that fairness of the playing field is restored. Our defense attorneys include several former prosecutors and a team that has been representing clients in municipal courts in Middlesex County, as well as at the Superior Court, for over a century combined. We can assist you irrespective of where you have been charged in the region, including:
To speak to a lawyer on our staff anytime 24/7 in a free initial consultation, you can contact one of our offices or simply call 732-246-7126.
When Is A Motor Vehicle Stop Legal?
Police must possess reasonable suspicion of a motor vehicle violation in order for a stop to be valid. This is a lesser standard than probable cause but still requires “specific and articulable facts” to support the intrusion of stopping the driver. Law enforcement cannot stop someone on a hunch but rather must possess specific facts that warrant a suspicion of wrongdoing. As technology has continued to advance, the incident of valid traffic stops has increased significantly as police scanning devices alert police if a passing motorist is driving while suspended or driving without insurance.
What Is Needed For The Police To Search Your Car?
You are protected against an unreasonable search and seizure under the United State Constitution and, as such, police may not detain you or search your car/motor vehicle without a reasonable basis. There must be: (1) probable cause to believe that the vehicle contains drugs, an illegal weapon, stolen property or other contraband; and (2) the circumstances resulting in probable cause were unforeseeable and spontaneous. In other words, there must be facts to support a search and the encounter must have been unintended (e.g. motorist was not a target prior to contact) in order for there to be a proper seizure of marijuana.
Do You Have An Obligation To Consent To A Search?
The answer to this question is no. Police need probable cause in order to request a consent search. When they fail to adhere to this requirement, a skilled attorney can seek dismissal of the related marijuana possession offense.
Middlesex County Marijuana Possession in a Motor Vehicle Lawyers
Traffic stops occur all the time and, unfortunately, so do warrantless searches. This is particularly true when the motorist is younger or shows other characteristics that really should have little to do with a valid basis to search. If you were stopped and your car/truck was subsequently searched without a proper basis in your judgment, the lawyers at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are prepared to fight to set the seizure aside. An attorney who is well versed in New Jersey search and seizure law will challenge the stop and everything that occurred thereafter, including the charge for marijuana possession. To speak to a lawyer on our staff now, call our New Brunswick Office at 732-246-7126.