Have police charged you with a drug distribution offense? If so, you are likely wondering if and how you can beat a drug distribution charge. A conviction for drug dealing often leads to long prison sentences and other collateral consequences like deportation if you are not a citizen, enhanced penalties for future offenses, and forfeiting important rights like your right to vote or possess a firearm. With those possible consequences looming over you, finding the right lawyer to help you beat a drug dealing charge needs to be your top priority.
At Gerash Steiner Blanton, P.C., our criminal defense lawyers have handled many drug distribution cases. We use that extensive experience to strategize the best defense for your drug charges. Contact our office today to find out how we can help you win a drug distribution case.
How Can You Beat a Drug Distribution Charge?
Every criminal case is unique. Although drug distribution cases tend to follow certain patterns, the details can be as varied as the individuals involved.
Cases sometimes take unexpected twists and turns that lead us in unexpected directions. That’s why we do not use a cookie-cutter approach to protecting our clients’ rights and freedoms. Instead, we thoroughly investigate every available defense allowed under Colorado law and leave no stone unturned.
Defenses to drug distribution charges fall into general categories of “pretrial” and “trial” defenses. We will examine those in greater detail.
We examine two complementary defenses in the pretrial stage of a case. First, we scrutinize the police reports and other documents to see if the facts recited in the reports are sufficient to charge you with a crime. If not, then we could file a motion to dismiss. Winning a motion to dismiss means you no longer have to face charges. There is a relatively small chance that the prosecution will later dig up more evidence and refile, but typically, a case that is dismissed for lack of evidence goes away and doesn’t come back.
Also, if the prosecution technically has enough evidence to charge you but their evidence is weak, a good defense lawyer could use this weakness as leverage. We can use such leverage at trial or to negotiate and get the prosecutor to reduce the charges dramatically.
Motion to Suppress Evidence
Motions to suppress are also powerful pretrial defenses. Motions to suppress evidence ask the judge to examine the constitutionality of the law enforcement officers’ conduct. Typically, this centers around the Fourth Amendment protections against illegal searches and seizures, but other protections can be argued as well. So if law enforcement violated your rights in their attempt to get evidence against you—that evidence could be thrown out through a successful suppression motion. That means the judge throws out all of the evidence the police seized that flowed from their violation of your constitutional rights.
After such illegally gained evidence is excluded, the prosecution might not have enough evidence left to proceed to trial. If they are without sufficient evidence to convict, they will likely dismiss the case against you.
Additionally, if you gave a statement as the result of the police violating your rights, we could also file a motion to suppress your statements to the police. We file motions to suppress statements when the police coerced a statement from you or violated your Miranda rights. Winning a motion to suppress statements does not usually lead to a dismissal of your charges, but it can weaken the prosecution’s case substantially.
We are not afraid to go to trial, and our documented history of success proves it. We have used various defenses throughout our careers to help our clients beat drug distribution charges. The circumstances of your case determine how we defend you.
The State’s Failure to Meet Their Burden of Proof
You should bear in mind that you have no burden to prove anything at trial. The law presumes you are innocent, and the prosecution carries the entire burden of proving you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The beyond a reasonable doubt standard is the highest standard of proof we use in the law. It is much greater than the probable cause standard, which allows the police to make an arrest. The presumption of innocence remains unless and until the government proves every element of the charge against you beyond a reasonable doubt.
Therefore, our defense strategy often focuses on convincing the jury that the State failed to satisfy its burden of proof. For example, we could contest the scientific analysis of the alleged controlled substance. Or, we might be able to challenge the State’s evidence that you were the person who committed the act in question. In the end, you must win an acquittal if the prosecution cannot prove every single element of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.
Attacking the Police Investigation
Police are under heavy scrutiny these days. While many police officers are fair and honest, some are not. Accordingly, we aggressively cross-examine drug officers on the facts of your case. Here is a sampling of areas we can explore through cross-examination of the police officers.
- Are they confusing your case with another? It might surprise you to know that officers handle so many investigations that it might be difficult to keep them straight in their minds—and confusion can mean reasonable doubt.
- Could they have planted evidence? If the police had the opportunity or motive, we could explore this possibility.
- Did they rush to judgment? Things are not always as they seem, and a rush to judgment can spell reasonable doubt.
- Did the police thoroughly investigate all options or take the easy route? Officers often take the path of least resistance to close a case instead of following all leads.
- Did they use a cooperating witness to entrap you? Successfully pleading entrapment can vindicate you if you were not predisposed to commit a crime.
These are merely a few ways we can challenge the police investigation. Your case might present different avenues of attack. If so, we will find them and exploit them to give you the best chance of beating your drug distribution charge.
We Can Be Your Voice
Colorado’s drug laws are stiff, and a conviction could severely derail your life. Take positive action today by contacting online or calling Gerash Steiner Blanton, P.C., at 303-830-0630 to schedule a free case review. Our award-winning defense attorneys have the experience you can rely on to win a drug distribution case. We are ready to fight to protect you, your freedom, and your rights.