Drug possession in Knoxville, Tennessee, is a criminal offense and may attract some severe consequences. If you are charged with drug possession, whether you intended to use it personally or sell it commercially, a criminal defense lawyer can guide you on the defenses that might apply to your case.
Possessing any amount of illegal drugs, including LSD, ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, marijuana, or methamphetamine is unlawful in Knoxville and several other states. Not only that, but such possession is also a federal crime. Knoxville has its own rules, but depending on the quantity of drugs the police found in your possession and the number of times you’ve been charged with possession of drugs, you could be facing possible life imprisonment.
When you are arrested for drug possession, the first thing to do is stay calm. The fact that you are arrested for drug possession does not mean you are guilty of the charge. Staying calm in such a situation might be a tall order, but an outburst will only make things worse. You may only attract other charges like resisting arrest or obstruction of justice. Besides, you could also be hurt in the process if the officers determine they must use force to take you in. So, when you are arrested, comply with the officers’ orders and ride to the station.
In the police station, you will be allowed to make a single call before you are restrained in a jail cell. If you have an attorney in your phone book, this is the best time to call him or her. But if you don’t, you can call a friend or family and have them get a lawyer for you.
Defenses against a charge of possession of drugs
In some situations, you (or your lawyer) can defend against a drug possession charge effectively. For example, you may challenge the stated facts, evidence, or testimony in the case, or focus on procedural errors or even challenge with an affirmative defense.
It could be that you were driving a friend’s car and had no idea that it had drugs, or that you didn’t know that drugs were near you when the officers found them and arrested you. Also, if the officers searched your body or car without cause and found drugs, they cannot use that as evidence in court because they did not respect your constitutional rights. It may also be argued that the officers planted drugs on you during a search – although this can be pretty hard to definitively prove.
Possession of drugs can be classified as either actual possession or constructive possession. The latter is where the defendant has drugs on their person at the time of arrest – like in their purses or pockets. The former is where the defendant was in control of the drugs even though they didn’t have the drugs in their possession during the arrest. Before you can be convicted of possession of drugs, the state needs to prove that you fall in one or both of these categories.