Best Defenses Against Drug Crimes in Colorado
Nov. 4, 2022
Colorado prosecutors take drug crimes very seriously. Even if you have been charged with a minor offense, it can lead to jail time, hefty fines, and a criminal record that will follow you for the rest of your life. If you’ve been convicted for a drug crime, don’t lose hope. Teaming up with a capable Colorado attorney can provide you with your best defense against a serious charge.
My firm, Watkins Law Firm LLC, is dedicated to protecting your rights and fighting for the future you deserve. After extensive experience in advocating for Colorado residents accused of drug crimes, I have cultivated strong relationships with industry professionals in the area, which helps encourage judges and prosecutors to understand my clients’ perspectives. I have also collected strategies and resources that empower me to build effective defenses against a variety of misdemeanor and felony drug charges.
If you live in or near Boulder, Colorado, and have been arrested for any drug-related crime, reach out to me as soon as possible. Along with 20+ years of defense experience, I offer my clients the thoughtful care and guidance they deserve while they navigate this stressful time. Let my trial skills and intimate knowledge of federal and Colorado drug laws provide you with the strongest possible defense against a serious charge.
Possible Defenses for Drug Crimes
Unlawful Search and Seizure
The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits Colorado police to search a person or a property without a warrant or probable cause. Police can only search the area listed in their search warrant. And, their warrant must be filed based on reliable information and be signed by a judge and specifically state the place they intend to search and what items they are looking for.
Drugs Were Planted / Not in Your Possession
Being charged for drug possession, trafficking, or distribution is only lawful if you were actually in possession of the substance in question. For example, if you’re pulled over and drugs are found in your car that a friend or other passenger left behind, you can argue that they are not in your possession and — depending on the situation — were planted there.
In Colorado, citizens are permitted to use medicinal marijuana. If police searched your home and finds marijuana, or another substance that you’ve been authorized to use for medical purposes, you should not face charges. You will need to present medical authorization as proof that you’re allowed to be in possession of the substance.
Drug entrapment is an effective defense if you can prove that you committed a crime only because law enforcement or a government official coerced you. This defense strategy is often used in cases involving undercover cops, but this would not apply if a friend, ordinary citizen, or even a paid informant was the one that induced you to commit the crime.
Proof of Intent
Many individuals caught in possession of drugs do not have any criminal intent. You may have even been arrested for drugs that you intended to dispose of. If this applies to you, you will need proof. This can be in the form of testimony from someone you spoke with about getting rid of the drugs, who can vouch for your lack of intent to sell or distribute them.
In criminal cases, not all evidence is required to be preserved, but missing evidence creates a shadow of doubt over the prosecution’s case. Sometimes, drug evidence goes missing because of police misconduct. If the state no longer has the drugs that were seized from you or your residence, your charges could be dropped.
Dos and Don’ts While Under Arrest
Ideally, you won’t ever have to be taken into custody for any reason. But, mistakes happen, and people get arrested for crimes they don’t even commit. How you behave during and after a drug arrest can make or break your defense case, so it’s in your best interest to know how to conduct yourself.
Panic – Getting arrested can be a terrifying experience, especially when it is for a crime you did not commit. Your first instinct may be to panic, and that is completely justified, but it is crucial that you remain as calm and collected as possible. Even if you are completely innocent, cooperate with police officers and be polite when you’re brought before a judge. Exhibiting rude or rash behavior during any point of the booking procedure will reflect poorly on you and reduce the credibility of your defense case.
Plead Guilty – While being cooperative is key, you don’t want to be cooperative to the extent of pleading guilty at your initial hearing. Penalties for drug convictions in Colorado can be quite harsh and have severe impacts on your future. Even if you are guilty of the charges brought against you, you deserve a fair resolution. Working with a criminal defense lawyer and going to trial can help uncover facts that may reduce your punishment, and secure access to receiving proper rehabilitation.
Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent – During or after an arrest, you will have the urge to explain yourself. That can wait. If you get arrested for drug trafficking, manufacturing, or any other drug crime, law enforcement may try to persuade you into talking. No matter how great of an explanation you may have, it’s always best to just say “I wish to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment” until your attorney shows up, because anything you say can be twisted and used against you later in court.
Exercise Your Right to an Attorney – This may go without saying, but it is always in your best interest to enlist the help of an attorney, especially when you’re facing charges as serious as drug crimes. I have dedicated over 20 years to defending people who have been convicted in Colorado and I possess vast knowledge about the state’s drug and criminal laws. Put your best foot forward and team up with me if you or a loved one has been arrested.
You Have Rights. Use Them.
Your future matters. Don’t leave them in just anyone’s hands — partner with an attorney you can trust and start building your defense now.
With over 20 years of practice experience as a criminal defense attorney, I have the knowledge and resources to design a strong defense, no matter what your case entails. If you have been charged with a drug crime in Colorado, you need a reliable and compassionate lawyer to help you avoid harsh and unjust penalties. I have the skills and intuition to effectively assist you, whether you are facing misdemeanor or felony charges. I proudly serve clients in Boulder, Longmont, Louisville, Lafayette, and Broomfield, Colorado.