The pungent odor of marijuana led police to a driver who, they say, was stashing the pot in his vehicle. The rookie New York Police Department officers drove by the man as he was about to enter his SUV, but purportedly hesitated when he spotted the police. Because of that, the rookies, who were being trained by a veteran cop, stopped to investigate. They say they discovered marijuana in his vehicle, and the man is now facing a drug possession charge.
When the officers looked into the vehicle, they reportedly spotted a quantity of marijuana on the console. Upon searching the vehicle they claim to have discovered 120 small bags of pot and three large bags of weed along with eight oxycodone pills. They arrested the 58-year-old man and charged him with criminal possession of marijuana, unlawful possession of pot and criminal possession of a controlled substance.
In this instance, defense counsel will assess the circumstances surrounding the man's arrest. Counsel will also review the search and seizure procedures used by the rookie police officers in order to identify legal and/or factual issues to raise in court. When facing criminal charges, those accused have the right to mount an aggressive defense and to retain experienced legal counsel to do so on their behalf.
It remains to be seen how these charges will be decided in court. The burden of proof for a drug possession charge, as with all criminal charges, rests squarely with New York prosecutors, who must establish each and every element of the crimes charged in court and beyond a reasonable doubt. That measure of proof is set high intentionally so that innocent people will not face convictions for crimes they did not commit.
Source: nypost.com, "Man busted with drug stash after cops follow pot odor", Tina Moore, Jan. 4, 2018