If possession under an ounce of marijuana has been decriminalized in my state, does an officer have probable cause to search my vehicle?

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If possession under an ounce of marijuana has been decriminalized in my state, does an officer have probable cause to search my vehicle?

The search was without my consent. What if he finds a small amount on my person?

Asked on October 23, 2013 under Criminal Law, Kansas

Answers:

Stacey Schlimmer / Schlimmer Law, LLC

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Probable Cause to search the vehicle can be based on a number of things - did he smell something? see something? Were you in your state or the State of Kansas (where any amount of marijuana is still illegal)?  An attorney will review your reports and any video from the officers or the officers' car.  After reviewing the evidence, an attorney can decide if he or she believes the search was legal or illegal.  If the attorney believes you have a case, a Motion to Suppress the evidence obtained from the search should be filed with the court.  It will be up to the Judge to agree or disagree with the Motion.  

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

The facts will depend on whether you were arrested for other reasons or if the probable cause for other reasons gave reason to search your vehicle. If you were driving, the car may be seized but it depends on the circumstances. If you believe that under your state's prescribed laws the search was vehicle and you were charged with something resulting from the search, your lawyer should ask the court to suppress the search, which may result in dimissal of charges because there would be an absence of physical evidence.


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