You’ve heard stories of cops mistaking powdered sugar from donuts for meth or coke. It ends up in innocent people going to jail and spending money for an attorney that they had no intention of spending.
How do the police determine a substance is an illegal drug?
In Wake County, an officer may do a field test at the scene of the alleged crime. This test will provide a preliminary indication of whether the substance is illicit or innocent. If the test comes back negative for drugs, but the cop still suspects the substance is illegal, he may send it to the state crime lab for further testing. If he finds other evidence of drugs nearby, such as a pipe, he may establish probably cause for arrest.
What if the substance comes back from the lab and it isn’t an illegal drug?
In this situation, the case should be dismissed, however, the defendant is likely weeks or months into the criminal case at that point. At this point, the defendant’s criminal defense attorney should go to the assistant district attorney and demand a dismissal.
I have been arrested for drug possession in Wake — what do I do?
You need an attorney, whether appointed or retained. You do not want to handle a felony possession case on your own, as you could end up in prison for years. If you were arrested for possession of cocaine, meth, heroin, marijuana, or another schedule substance, contact the Attorney William Pruden at (919) 880-2124 to talk about your options.