Do I have a change against a H&S11378 charge? 6 Answers as of June 17, 2011On 5/24/11 I purchased a car from a friend. I was in a hurry to get the car smog checked and registered, which I did- so we agreed to to meet the next day as he wanted to check for any possible belongings he may have left in the vehicle. On 5-25-11 I was pulled over for driving an unregistered vehicle. The vehicle was registered, I had just done it about 6 hours earlier. Unfortunately, it was discovered that I was driving on a suspended license. In addition to this I also had a misdemeanor arrest warrant for failing to complete some community service from a prior case. I was then arrested and during the course of the arrest the officers found a single bag of meth, 2-3 grams and a container of various prescription pills. A small digital scale was found in a space under the glove compartment. I had approximately $1,300 cash in my wallet. I was then charged with H&S 11378. The dope and the pills and the scale were not mine, I had no idea they were even in the vehicle. The dope and pills were in the trunk, the scale near the glove box. I was only charged $500 for the vehicle. I had expected to pay up to $2,000 for the car, a 2000 Volvo S-70, but was able to negotiate a much better deal. This is why I had so much cash on hand. Is this a defensible case? If this goes to trial, do you think I stand much of a chance of winning?
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
There's always a chance. A case like this needs to picked apart by a good attorney. You start with the reason for the initial stop, then analyze the events leading up to the arrest, the search incident to arrest, etc. Sounds like you have a viable defense. A good attorney uses the things in your favor to get an acceptable settlement of the case. If a settlement can't be reached, then trial is always the last option and anything can happen when you put your fate in the hands of twelve strangers. Feel free to call me if you'd like to discuss the case in more detail.
Answer Applies to: California
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
A chance? Sure. If you dont think so, then simply plead guilty and go to jail. Of course you can fight it. When arrested or charged with any crime, the proper questions are, can any evidence obtained in a search or confession be used against you, and can you be convicted, and what can you do? Raise all possible defenses with whatever admissible and credible witnesses, evidence and facts are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or at trial. Effective plea-bargaining, using those defenses, could possibly keep you out of jail, or at least dramatically reduce it. There is no magic wand to wave and make it all disappear. Not exactly a do it yourself project in court for someone who does not know how to effectively represent himself against a professional prosecutor intending to convict and jail you. If you don't know how to do these things effectively, then hire an attorney that does, who will try to get a dismissal, diversion, reduction or other decent outcome through plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate. If serious about hiring counsel to help you in this, and if this is in SoCal courts, feel free to contact me.
Answer Applies to: California