Drug Crimes

Articles Posted in Drug Crimes

In a recent opinion from a Michigan court involving drug possession, the prosecution asked for the court to reconsider its previous order allowing the defendant to suppress incriminating evidence against him. The defendant had filed a motion to suppress evidence and dismiss charges of possession of a controlled substance less than 25 grams and possession of marijuana. The trial court agreed with the defendant that the drugs should not be used as evidence against him, as the police officer that looked in his car had not followed the correct departmental protocols while conducting the search. The higher court in Michigan...
Recently a state appellate court issued a per curiam decision in a defendant’s appeal of her Michigan drug offense conviction. The case arose when officers discovered a bag of cocaine in a store dressing room. An officer approached the defendant and her friend inquiring about the drugs, and the defendant admitted that the cocaine was hers. The defendant unsuccessfully motioned to suppress her confession because they were given involuntarily and in violation of her Miranda rights. A jury convicted the defendant of possession of cocaine. The officer testified that he did not threaten, restrain, or block her ability to exit...
Recently, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled that judges can no longer prohibit defendants from using medical marijuana as part of their probation. The defendant was charged with assault and battery following a road rage incident. He pleaded guilty, and the judge sentenced him to one year of probation. A condition of probation was that the defendant was not to use marijuana, including medical marijuana. In response, the defendant filed a motion arguing that the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act (MMMA) entitles individuals to certain protections, such as protection from arrest, prosecution, or penalty. However, the prosecution contended that the court...
Recently, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Michigan operating while visibly impaired (OWVI) case involving the defendant’s claim that the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act (MMMA) prevents him from being charged. However, ultimately, the court disagreed, affirming his conviction. A Michigan OWVI offense is similar to an operating while intoxicated (OWI) offense, except that it does not require proof of intoxication. Instead, the prosecution can proceed under the theory that a defendant was visibly intoxicated. In an OWVI case, the prosecution does not need to present any proof that the defendant was actually intoxicated, only that they were...
Posted in: Drug Crimes, DWI
Recently, a Michigan appellate court issued an opinion stemming from a defendant’s motion to suppress evidence based on his Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. In this case, the defendant was a passenger in a vehicle. The police pulled over the vehicle for having cracks in the windshield. When deputies approached the car, they noticed firearms on the floor, sitting in front of the defendant. The deputies searched the car and discovered that the gun was loaded. They also discovered heroin and cocaine behind the passenger door handle. The defendant was charged with several serious...
Recently, a state appellate court issued a written opinion in a Michigan marijuana case in which the defendant argued that the identity of the confidential informant used by law enforcement should be disclosed. Ultimately, the court concluded that the defendant was not entitled to the disclosure and affirmed the defendant’s conviction for both the distribution of marijuana as well as a firearms offense. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, police officers were tipped off by a confidential informant that the defendant was selling marijuana from his home in Pontiac, Michigan. As officers arrived at the defendant’s...
Last month, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Michigan drug case discussing whether police officers had probable cause to arrest the defendant for the distribution of drugs. Ultimately, the court concluded that, while the defendant was not the one selling the drugs, his presence at the scene as well as his conduct, gave officers probable cause to arrest him. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, undercover police officers arranged to buy LSD from a woman at the Electric Forest Music Festival. When officers met up with the woman, she was accompanied by the...
Earlier this year, a state appellate court issued a written opinion in a Michigan drug case discussing a probation officer’s legal authority to search a probationer’s home. Ultimately, while the court agreed that a probation officer can generally search a probationer’s home due to the decreased expectation of privacy probationers enjoy, the search in this case was unlawful because the search occurred after the defendant’s probation had terminated. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, the defendant was initially placed on probation on June 24, 2013, for a period of two years. That sentence was set to...
Posted in: Drug Crimes
Earlier this year, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Michigan gun case in which the defendant challenged the officer’s search of his vehicle. Ultimately, the court concluded that the search was permissible based on the fact that the officer noticed a strong smell of marijuana, even though the defendant had a valid medical marijuana card. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, a police officer stopped the defendant for speeding. When the officer approached the defendant’s car, he noticed a strong odor of fresh marijuana, indicating to the officer that there was a “good...
Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued a written opinion in a Michigan gun case involving a police officer’s purported inventory search of the defendant’s vehicle. The case is a good example of what police officers can – and cannot – do during a valid Michigan traffic stop. According to the court’s opinion, a police officer observed the defendant driving a car with a license plate light that was hanging in front of the license plate. The officer followed the defendant into a parking lot, and the defendant parked in a spot in the far corner of the lot....