Facing charges for drug possession can lead to potentially costly outcomes. A conviction for possession can bring jail time and substantial fines, not to mention a criminal record that will disrupt your job possibilities and even your access to home rentals. When you want to fight charges of possession, the first thing you need to know is the nature of the charge.
There are two different classifications for drug possession charges and one is often easier to fight than the other.
What is active possession?
If you face charges for active possession of a controlled substance, the drugs were on your person. This can mean that they were in your pocket, in the pocket of your jacket or even in a backpack that was on your shoulder. As long as you were physically in control of the item containing the substance, that qualifies for active possession charges. These charges are more difficult to fight because it is harder to prove that you were unaware or it was unintentional.
What is constructive possession?
Constructive possession is easier to fight. It refers to possession when you were not in direct control of the substance. Drugs found in your car, in your home or even in a storage locker would trigger constructive possession charges since you were not directly in contact with the substance. You can more easily argue that the drugs belong to someone else in a constructive possession situation.
Understanding the nature of the possession charges is the first step toward building a defense.