If you’re facing a drug charge in Indiana, you’re hardly alone. Drug offenses are one of the most common charges in the state. Many people who face these charges also have something else in common: they make mistakes after the charge, landing them in deeper hot water. Here are five mistakes to avoid after you’ve been charged for a drug offense in Indiana.
- Talking to the police. The most common mistake defendants facing drug charges make is speaking to the police about the charge or incident. The police can–and will– use any information against you. No matter how friendly they appear, their goal is to get you to confess or spill incriminating details. When questioned by the police, answer necessary information about your identity, but beyond that, only request to speak with a lawyer.
- Consenting to a search. If the police ask to search your vehicle, property, or person, you have the right to refuse–and you should. Police officers must have “probable cause” to search your belongings without your permission. Probable cause means that they have a reasonable suspicion that you committed a crime. If the police ask for your consent to search, they likely know that they don’t have probable cause. You should refuse your consent because anything they’ll use anything incriminating they find during the search against you.
- Admitting to possession. Never admit to any drug charge without first consulting with your attorney. The police can use mild comments such as “It was only a little bit,” or “I’m holding it for a friend,” against you in a court of law. Even if you were caught red-handed, say nothing about it until you speak to an attorney.
- Posting on social media. Social media has increased the troubles of many defendants facing drug charges. The prosecution and police can use anything you post against in court. Thus, if you post a reference to using, possessing, or even being around drugs, they may use that comment or photo to bolster evidence against you. They may even use comments from friends of yours who reference drug activity or illegal behavior. Stay away from social media altogether until your case is over.
- Failing to contact a lawyer immediately. Many defendants think they can handle the situation on their own, perhaps talking their way out of the charge. However, going it alone inevitably creates more problems than it solves–and makes it more difficult for any attorney that you may hire to achieve a good result. It’s best to hire an attorney as soon as possible after the charge. Your attorneys can help you make smart decisions, preserve your rights, and get the best possible outcome.