What are defenses that can be used for fighting an arrest?

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What are defenses that can be used for fighting an arrest?

Approximately 8 months ago I was on the run from the law for probation violations on drug charges; I was visiting at a friends visiting when it was raided by narcotics officers. We were placed in handcuffs. They then searched me and my friends and found a large amount of money and meth on the homeowner; they searched me but found nothing. They asked if there were any drugs that didn’t belong to the homeowner and I told them that I had a very small amount of meth and 2 morphine pills laying on the table. My name was then called into dispatch and and it was discovered that I was wanted on probation violation. Then they took off the handcuffs and left without arresting me or the homeowner. I left there immediately and was told later that they had later arrested the homeowner on possession with intent to sell and deliver. I stayed on the run for about another month and then turned myself in on the prior probation violation. I was sentenced a month after that and served 7 months. At my release I was picked up by the county and served with possession of controlled substance and 2 morphine pills. Now while I claimed verbally at my friends some drugs were mine, I never signed anything to that effect (I just told the officer they were mine mine). Should there be some kind of documentation that I signed saying it was mine? Next, is are the some kind of loophole that could stop criminal proceeding on these charges since the authorities waited 7 months before they charged me? I was right there in county jail for 4 months; then 3 months at DOC. Finally, if I was wanted at the time of the raid and the police knew that but failed to arrest me at that time, would that provide me with a defense?

Asked on May 24, 2011 under Criminal Law, North Carolina

Answers:

M.S., Member, Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You have asked several questions, so I'll address them one at a time.  First, while a written confession would be stronger (from the state/prosecutor's point of view) compared to a verbal confession, a verbal confession remains a confession.  Therefore, it will be your word against the officer's.  Moreover, there may be other witnesses to the confession who will be willing to testify that they heard you say it.  Thus, the question will become whether it will be possible to have that confession suppressed i.e. thrown out.  Perhaps it will be possible to do based upon a violation of your fourth or fifth amendment rights; however, it would be necessary to review the police report in greater detail to make any type of determination in that regard.  Second, it does not sound like the delay, in itself, is a basis to get the charges thrown out.  Most crimes have a statute of limitations of greater than 7 months, therefore, since the warrant was served within several months it is unlikely that that, in itself, constitutes a defense.  Third, on the other hand, if you can demonstrate that the delay was due to some sort of prosecutorial misconduct, then perhaps it will provide you with a defense.  Regardless, due to the complexity of this situation it is clear that you need to consult with a local defense attorney to discuss this matter at length and develop an effective defense strategy.  Good luck.


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