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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    1

    Default First Time Marijuana Possession Charge in Maryland

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: MD Marijuana Possession
    I am a 15 year old kid who was picked up by an older friend of mine to go to a girl's house. We were pulled over for "swerving a little over the white line", with the cops knowing the kid who was driving's name. He stepped out and explained why he had not gotten his side view mirror replaced. Then, they opened the back door, reached under the seat and pulled out an open beer from the 22 year old sitting there. He was pulled out, searched, and found marijuana, coke, and a bowl. Then, the remaining 3 of us (all 15 or younger) were pulled out and searched, with nothing on us. Then, without asking, the cops searched the car saying it "smelled of marijuana" when it did not. They searched the car and found a bowl and a bag of weed with about 1 gram in it. The driver and 22 year old were arrested while all of the minors are being charged with possession charges. I was out of arms reach of anything illegal, and did not have anything personally on me. The cops explained it as collective possession in Maryland but if the driver takes responsibility, then why charge us? And did they really have probable cause to search the car or open the back of the car and reach under the seat to get the open container (half a beer in the 22 year olds possession)? Please help with any legal information to guide me. The cop explained we would most likely go into Joints, a community service program, but if I never possessed marijuana (as I didn't even know the driver had it) and if they really didnt have probable cause to search the car, could the case be thrown out? I will be recieving my information in the mail in the next few days to see hwat options are avaialble. I am 15, an A student and am very active at school, I am just asking if this sounds like a viable case to be thrown out, especially on my end of things. Please give any advice at all.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    98,846

    Default Re: First Time Marijuana Possession Charge in Maryland

    You have the right to fight the charge, attempt to convince the juvenile court that you didn't know that anybody in the vehicle had marijuana, and see what the court decides.

    You were a passenger in the car, not the driver or owner, so you don't have standing to object to a search that may have infringed the rights of the driver or owner. Further, if the police officers justify a search based upon "plain smell", specifically the smell of marijuana, and then find marijuana, it's an uphill battle to try to convince a court that the officers did not in fact smell marijuana. If you're a smoker you may not be sensitive to the smell, or how it clings to cars and clothes; officers are sensitive to the smell.

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