How do I know if my stop was unconstitutional?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How do I know if my stop was unconstitutional?

One night a friend and I, both minors, were driving to get something to eat and then go back to her house. We did have marijuana and paraphernalia on us illegally however we didn’t do anything illegal so as to get us pulled over. When I asked why we got pulled over, the officer never answered me but just proceeded to ask how much marijuana we had and then he took it. We both then had to get out of the car and go to separate squad cars. I asked my officer why we were pulled over but he couldn’t give me any information due to the fact that he was the

backing officer. Later I then found out that the

officer waited until my friends parents arrived to

say anything about why we were pulled over

and all he said was traffic violation and he

never specified what we ever did wrong. My

friend who was the one driving never even

got a ticket for any type of traffic violation. So

why question is if the stop was legal, and if

theres anything we can do to contest it?

Asked on February 9, 2019 under Criminal Law, Oklahoma


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If there was no reason to stop you--i.e. you were not violating any traffic laws or driving carelessly; any drugs or paraphrenalia you had were not visible; no one had called in a complaint about your use of the car or how you were driving; there were no warrants out for the car's owner or suspension of the car's owner's license or the car's registration (which can themselves trigger a stop if the plates were checked); etc.--then the stop would seem to be illegal which would make evidence obtained during thes stop inadmissible. There must be some valid reason to stop a car; if not, since the stop should never have been made, what was found during or as a result of the stop cannot be used. It therefore may be possible to throw out or get dismissed any drug charges, if there was no evidence for them but the rsults of the stop. If you think this is the case, then retain a criminal defense attorney to help you--a lawyer will be *much* better than you at showing that a stop was invalid and the evidence inadmissible.
However, you write that essentially the first thing the officer asked you was how much marijuana you had. How did he know you had marijuana? Did someone tip him off? Were you in fact driving in an obviously impaired way? If he had some reason to know or suspect that you had or were using drugs, the stop would be proper.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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