If you got arrested in Sarasota for a drug crime as a result of a traffic stop you might want to read this. In theory, police are not supposed to make profile stops, but in the real world, they do all the time. If you are in a certain neighborhood, in what the police call a high crime area, and you do not look like you “belong” there, the police will find some way to justify a traffic stop. They may claim you tag light was too dim. They may claim that you rolled through a stop sign. They may claim that your tint looked too dark (this is their favorite). They simply make up a reason to stop, detain and question you.
In some cases, the officer then claims he smells marijuana and he asks permission to search the vehicle. Sometimes people do not realize that if they smoked in the preceding hours, their car or their clothes smell like burnt weed. The human nose adjusts to a smell in four minutes. The person may no longer smell it, but an officer just coming up to the car may legitimately smell it. The police may use their “belief” that they smell marijuana to detain you for a drug dog search. The length of the detention is important. They should only be able to detain you long enough to write a legitimate ticket. They take their own sweet time writing it delay you until the drug dog to arrive.
Next comes a full scale search of the car. If you are charged with possession of a controlled substance in Sarasota or Manatee, or worse yet trafficking in cocaine, trafficking in MDMA, or fentanyl and your case involved a car stop, you need to examine carefully the circumstances surrounding the stop. This is where a good experienced Sarasota criminal defense lawyer becomes really important.
If your defense attorney can prove it was a bad stop or an illegal and unlawful detention, you may be able to win the case on a search and seizure issue. An experienced drug lawyer can make a huge difference in the possible outcome. You may have made one mistake already. Do not make a second one shopping for the cheapest lawyer. Having a good Sarasota or Bradenton drug attorney may make a difference.
If you have questions or want to talk, call 941 366 3506