Traffic Stop Virginia Beach Lawyer Drug Possession Illegal Search Evidence

Traffic Stop Virginia Beach Lawyer Drug Possession Illegal Search Evidence

Jason v. Commonwealth
Facts:

Defendant sought review of his conviction by the Circuit Court for the City of Virginia Beach (Virginia) for possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute. Defendant challenged the admissibility of the marijuana and a statement he made to officers on the ground that the evidence was obtained in an illegal search and without the officers’ giving him Miranda warnings.

Traffic Stop Virginia Beach Lawyer Drug Possession Illegal Search Evidence

Traffic Stop Virginia Beach Lawyer

Issue:
  • Whether defendant was in custody when he consented to the search and admitted ownership of the luggage?
Discussions:

Defendant was stopped for speeding. An officer asked if he could search the car. Defendant agreed verbally and signed a consent form. When a second officer asked about luggage in the trunk, defendant replied it was his. The officers found marijuana, arrested defendant, and gave him Miranda warning. On appeal of defendant’s conviction, the court found that defendant was not in custody when he consented to the search and admitted ownership of the luggage. Noting that the officer was justified in stopping defendant, the court concluded that the subsequent detainment and questioning did require Miranda warnings. With ample evidence to the contrary, the court rejected defendant’s claim that his consent to search was not voluntary. Because defendant had complete dominion and control over the marijuana found in the luggage, the court found that the evidence was sufficient to establish his constructive possession of the drugs. Affirming the conviction, the court held that the marijuana and defendant’s statement were properly admitted into evidence.

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Article written by A Sris

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Disclaimer:

These summaries are provided by the SRIS Law Group. They represent the firm’s unofficial views of the Justices’ opinions. The original opinions should be consulted for their authoritative content.