Arrested for Possessing Marijuana?
Marijuana is still illegal in Texas
and vigorously prosecuted in the Brazos Valley!
You may get a citation in some places, you may have a medical marijuana card from another state, or it may be completely legal in some states - that will not matter in most counties in Texas. You will be arrested, prosecuted, go to jail, and even have your DL suspended for 6 months!
Do not go to jail for your friend's marijuana!
In Texas, the prosecutor only has to prove that you were in "care, custody, management, or control" of any usable amount of marijuana. That means you could be arrested for your friend's marijuana who is riding in your car. Unless it is clearly in your friend's possession and not yours, the police officer could arrest both you and your friend.
Don't risk Jail and losing your driver's license!
For the least amount of usable marijuana, you could be sentenced up to 6 months in jail and a fine up to $2,000. But, that is not all - if you have a conviction, DPS will suspend your DL for 6 months - and that is not something even the Judge can prevent. For amounts over 2 ounces but less than 4 ounces, the punishment doubles. Any amount over 4 ounces is a felony for which you could go to prison. Marijuana oil - or THC - possession is a felony in any amount - even the smallest amount. Don't risk going to a Texas prison.
Know Your Rights
The U.S. and Texas Constitutions protect you against searches that are unreasonable or without a warrant. Sometimes, if an police officer does not have either, they will ask for your consent to search your house, car, or belongings. You do not have to agree and consent. Many times, an officer will claim to have "probable cause" because they smell the odor of marijuana in your vehicle or see a bong, blunt, grinder, or any other drug paraphernalia in "plain view" inside your vehicle. Believe it or not, if they do smell it or see it, they do not need a warrant or your consent - they have "probable cause" to search your whole vehicle and that search could later be upheld in a court if the judge believes they are telling the truth. Without that probable cause, though, you may refuse to allow a search.
The U.S. and Texas Constitutions also protect your right to not answer any questions about marijuana or contraband the officer may accuse you of possessing. But, the officer is not required to inform you of that right until after you are arrested, even though you have that right before you are arrested also. Remember to not say anything about your case until you consult with an attorney. If you tell the officer politely, but firmly, that you are going to talk to an attorney first, that officer must quit asking you questions designed to get a confession.
Your next step should be to contact a Marijuana Defense Lawyer as soon as possible to fight your case. Shannon Flanigan has dealt with marijuana possession cases for over 20 years. He represents good people charged with this offense all over the Brazos Valley. Our goal is always to get the case dismissed, keep it off your record, and keep your driver's license from being suspended.
We do that by first obtaining from the prosecutor all the offense reports and video from your arrest. We will then analyze it, looking for officer mistakes that violated your Constitutional rights and for evidence that could exonerate you. That information will be used in your defense before the Court to get you a dismissal or the best deal possible. Remember, no lawyer may guarantee a dismissal of your case, but we will do our best to try. If the prosecutor doesn't dismiss the case, we have the experience that is necessary to take it to the next level - a jury trial.