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What Is Unwitting Possession?

What Is Unwitting Possession?

“The Drugs Weren’t Mine” Defense

Believe it or not, it is possible to commit a drug crime without realizing it. Getting caught in the wrong place at the wrong time can result in unexpected drug possession charges, and the last thing you need is to suffer jail, fines and a criminal record for a crime you didn’t realize you committed.

Luckily, you can have hope knowing there is a hard-hitting affirmative defense that could strengthen your drug possession case. An affirmative defense requires the defendant to provide evidence to rid them of criminal liability for their alleged offense. If successful, their legal penalties may get reduced or dismissed altogether. Examples of affirmative defenses include:

  • Self-defense
  • Entrapment
  • Insanity
  • Necessity
  • Unwitting possession

Understanding the Unwitting Possession Defense

In cases involving drug possession offenses, a popular affirmative defense is unwitting possession. Unwitting possession of a controlled substance means you did, in fact, commit the crime of drug possession but you did not realize it. Not knowing that you possessed a controlled substance, nor the nature of such drug, is highly possible but that doesn’t mean you should face criminal penalties for it.

Thus, you could employ the unwitting possession defense to protect yourself from being perceived as knowingly and intentionally liable for an alleged crime. Common examples of unwitting drug possession include:

  • A mail carrier delivers a package containing cocaine
  • You borrowed your friend’s car, got pulled over and a police officer searches the car and discovers a bag of heroin
  • A bitter ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend planted a bag of ketamine in your backpack at school
  • You borrow your cousin’s suitcase for an out-of-state trip and at the airport, a drug-sniffing dog detects meth hidden in the lining of your cousin’s suitcase
  • Your sibling asks you to pick up a package for them, and the package happens to contain controlled substance paraphernalia

What to Do When You’re Accused of Drug Possession

Do not allow yourself to be wrongfully accused of a crime you didn’t realize you committed, especially one that involves drug possession. A highly serious accusation, a drug crime charge can derail your future and freedom upon a conviction.

To best combat your Oakland drug possession charges, enlist the representation of the Law Office of Nabiel C. Ahmed. Backed by over a decade of experience, we know what it takes to successfully champion your best interests. Speak with our criminal defense lawyer right away by calling (510) 907-6600!