Drug charges can mean jail time and lifelong career limitations after a conviction. A criminal record involving drug charges in Texas will likely have a profound impact on your life.
People often plead guilty because they think that fighting the charges will result in worse consequences. Although that can sometimes be true, many people do successfully fight back against drug charges and avoid criminal penalties altogether.
Challenging the evidence that the state wants to use against you is often a big part of successfully defeating a drug charge. When can someone challenge state evidence and prevent the prosecutor from using it in court?
When the police officer violated your rights
Did a police officer force their way into your house without consent or probable cause? Did they pull you over while you were driving because of racial profiling and no real justification?
If you can show that the search, conversation or traffic stop that resulted in your arrest was actually a violation of your rights, you may be able to ask the courts to exclude the evidence gathered during that encounter.
When the police don’t properly store the evidence
Mistakes in handling and chemical contamination can affect the accuracy of evidence. If the police don’t gather, transport and store the evidence properly or if they fail to maintain accurate records about the chain of custody for the evidence, this could undermine the validity of the evidence.
A careful review of state records can sometimes show that the evidence is vulnerable to a challenge based on inaccuracies or gaps in the chain of custody.
When the police make assumptions or engage in questionable science
Police officers looking for drugs are often so eager to find the evidence that they want, that they fail to consider other reasonable explanations for the evidence they find. For example, people have been arrested and charged with serious drug offenses only for the substance in question to turn out to be sugar.
Either due to the improper performance of a test or because officers make an assumption, someone could get arrested because they have an item that somehow resembles a drug but it is not actually a drug.
If you can perform your own chemical analysis of the evidence, that might exonerate you. You could also potentially undermine the validity of the evidence by questioning how police officers gathered the evidence against you or the science used to evaluate it.
Learning more about common defense strategies can help you fight back against pending Texas drug charges.