Arrest for Marijuana Possession in a Motor Vehicle Can be Cause for Concern

Concern about one’s future can be a nagging thing especially when that future hangs on a courtroom hearing for marijuana possession in a car, or a cannabis-related drug DUI arrest. Not only is marijuana one of the most common drugs encountered by police in the New Jersey area, but arrests involving marijuana, hash, weed or pot are certainly as frequent, if not more so, as those for other controlled dangerous substances (CDSs) such as cocaine and narcotic-based pharmaceuticals.

When one realizes that an estimated $30-plus billion of pot is grown in all across the United States annually, it shouldn’t be too surprising that marijuana-related motor vehicle arrests occur quite frequently. In fact, the attorneys at my law firm have more than 40 years of experience defending drivers and other individuals against marijuana-related offenses throughout New Jersey. For myself, as a former municipal prosecutor and now a DUI-DWI and criminal defense attorney, I have been involved in literally hundreds of cases during my career.

As DWI and drug DUI defense lawyers, my legal staff is familiar With drunk driving, alcohol and drug possession cases held in both municipal and county courts throughout the state. Whether a charge is cannabis-related charges. Whether you have been charged with marijuana possession in a vehicle, drunk driving or breath test refusal, the attorneys at my firm have the expertise to defend clients against marijuana, CDS and alcohol-related charges.

Whenever we see a news story regarding a police traffic stop that results in a person being cited for a CDS or marijuana offense, we immediately think about the circumstances of that arrest, namely whether or not the initial traffic stop was made based on probable cause, or if the subsequent search of the accused’s vehicle was made properly by the arresting officer.

Certainly, as DWI-DUI defense lawyers, our thoughts go immediately to the issue of whether the state can actually prove that the driver was in possession or control of the marijuana or CDS while operating his or her vehicle. Take the news article we ran across a while back involving a woman who was arrested by Mansfield, NJ, police on charges of DWI and marijuana possession.

According to those reports, early on a Wednesday morning around half past two, a police patrol stopped a vehicle operated by a 22-year-old female driver from Washington, New Jersey. The officer in charge apparently based the traffic stop on the motorist’s inability to maintain her lane. Subsequently, during the roadside stop, the patrolman reportedly detected the odor of marijuana emanating from within the vehicle itself.

As a result of smelling the cannabis, officers searched and found a substance that they believed to be marijuana, as well as some related drug paraphernalia. In addition to marijuana and drug paraphernalia possession, the officers arrested the driver on suspicion of DWI after she failed a number of field sobriety tests.

Back at police headquarters, the woman was formally charged with possession of marijuana (under 50gm), possession of drug paraphernalia, driving under the influence of alcohol, failure to maintain lanes, failure to inspect, plus possession of a CDS in a motor vehicle. She was eventually released to a responsible adult pending a future courtroom appearance.

Mansfield Police charge Washington woman with DWI, possession of marijuana; NJ.com; August 31, 2013