Recently, a 19-year-old man residing in Lindenhurst, New York, was charged with felony drug possession. The man’s arrest stems from an incident in September 2012, when the man was arrested along with a partner and charged with possession of cocaine. The man’s companion was also charged with drug possession and made his first court appearance at the same time as the man. Both men are charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fourth degree and the misdemeanor of criminally using drug paraphernalia in the second degree. The case is currently adjourned until the end of October.
Drug charges, particularly felonies, are prosecuted with the utmost seriousness by authorities. A conviction for a drug offense can involve long jail sentences, substantial fines and a felony conviction that can have negative employment and immigration consequences. However, for lower-level offenders, prosecutors may offer plea deals reducing the sentence in exchange for help with a higher-level case.
A worry in a case like this may be that police and prosecutors will attempt to get the two men arrested to testify against each other. Prosecutors could figure out who they think is easier to prosecute and get the other suspect to maybe exaggerate some details in order to secure a conviction.
In drug cases, an important factor to consider is the constitutionality of the search and seizure of the contraband. The search must be supported by a search warrant, and the police must have probable cause to suspect that contraband may be found.
Source: Lindenhurstpatch.com, “Lindy Man Appears in Upstate Court on Felony Drug Charges,” Sarah Studley, Oct. 9, 2012