We posted a blog awhile back titled Drugs in a car are Everyone’s Drugs- The Automobile Presumption. We received quite a bit of feed back on that, as many people were unaware that they could be charged with possession of not only drugs, but also weapons if they are in a car with someone who has drugs or weapons.
Addressing some of the questions and comments we heard from that post here, we also wanted to bring up another legal presumption here in NY State, the Room Presumtion. New York Penal – Article 220 – § 220.25 Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance; Presumption states that “The presence of a narcotic drug, narcotic preparation, marihuana or phencyclidine in open view in a room…controlled substance is presumptive evidence of knowing possession thereof by each and every person in close proximity to such controlled substance at the time such controlled substance was found;…” Similar articles are in place for illegal weapons as well.
So you’re at a party where there are drugs, yes you can be charged with possession even if you were not using the drugs, touching the drugs etc… Same goes for illegal weapons. It’s important to note here, illegal weapons are not limited to guns when it comes to the Room Presumption. There are many items which can be considered illegal weapons.
Another important point as we discussed in our article Felony on your record? Stay away from guns! Is that merely being in the same room with a gun could violate a person’s parole, probation or even in just the case of a felony record result in a double sentence if considered a predicate if the conviction is less than 10 years old.
The take home message here, once again- choose your friends wisely. Know your surroundings and who is around you. The people you choose to associate yourself with could impact your life, as well as your criminal record. Certainly, there are constitutional questions and defenses to be raised in such circumstances. If you find yourself charged with a crime of this nature, it is imperative that you contact an experienced, knowledgeable criminal attorney in your state. If your charges are in Onondaga, Oneida, Madison, or Jefferson County and have additional questions, don’t hesitate to CONTACT OUR OFFICE
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