What is a motion to suppress evidence, and how is it used in a drug case? If you have been charged with drug possession in Boise, ID, it is possible to defend yourself against the change with the help of a Boise drug possession defense lawyer. Drug possession charges are typically brought following a search-and-seizure routine by law enforcement agencies. For a search and arrest to be valid, specific legal requirements must be met. Failure to meet these requirements may cause a court to decide that a drug-related search or arrest was not legal.
A good lawyer will use the circumstances of the search and arrest to build up your defense in a drug possession case. When using this line of defense, a motion to suppress evidence is often filed.
What is a Motion to Suppress Evidence?
A motion to suppress evidence is usually filed by the defendant in a drug possession case. This motion must be filed before the trial begins. This is why it is also known as a pre-trial motion.
In this motion, the defendant moves the court to suppress evidence presented by the prosecution. The reasoning is that the evidence presented by the prosecution was not gathered in a legal manner. As the methods used to gather evidence were illegal, the evidence can’t be admitted in a court of law. Thus the court should dismiss it.
A judge will review the motion and the relevant evidence to see if your motion is valid. If the motion is successful, the relevant evidence will be suppressed. In many cases, a motion like this is filed for key evidence in a drug possession case. When that evidence is successfully suppressed, the prosecution no longer has a strong case. So the success of a motion to suppress evidence may often persuade the prosecution to have the charges against you dismissed altogether.
While this is how this motion works, it is important to know when you can file a motion like this. Here is a look at this.
When Can You a Motion to Suppress Evidence?
The motion to suppress evidence is typically relevant in situations where the Fourth Amendment is applicable. The Fourth Amendment details precisely how law enforcement agencies can search, seize, and arrest in criminal cases. The Amendment guarantees the rights of the citizens and ensures that search-and-seizure activities by the police do not encroach upon these rights.
To do this, the Fourth Amendment mandates that police may conduct search-and-seizure operations where there is reasonable suspicion. And any arrests made by the police must be backed by probable cause of criminal conduct.
“Reasonable suspicion” and “probable cause” are broad and sweeping terms. However, they can be used for effective defense in a drug possession case. Here is a look at some example scenarios.
- You are stopped on a highway while traveling in a vehicle. An officer conducts a search of your vehicle and recovers marijuana. Such a stop can be deemed illegal by a court. This is because the officer had no reasonable suspicion to think that you were carrying drugs at the time. Even if the drugs were later recovered, a lawyer can argue that any evidence following the arrest is not admissible as the stop was not legal.
- You are walking down a street and not acting in an unusual way. A police patrol vehicle stops by your side. An officer asks you to stop and conducts a frisk operation. Even if drugs are found on your person, the legality of the stop-and-search can be questioned in court. If its legality is not clear, a lawyer can move the court to a motion to suppress evidence.
- You are at a friend’s place and the police suddenly arrive for a search. If there is no warrant, the search and any subsequence evidence that is recovered will not be deemed legal. Even if there is a warrant but the police didn’t have a valid probable cause for the warrant, the search-and-seizure can be questioned before a judge.
These are only some of the countless scenarios where a motion to suppress evidence can be filed in a drug possession case. As noted above, the success of the motion can often lead to a dismissal of the charges or a significant reduction of the charges.
Hiring a Reliable Drug Possession Defense Lawyer in Boise, ID
If you have been charged with drug possession in Boise, Idaho, we can help you. Here at the Hooper Law Offices, we have helped many people successfully defend themselves against drug-related charges. Our lawyers are experienced in using defenses like motion to suppress evidence in order to have your charges dismissed or reduced. Call us today for a free discussion with our lawyers.