Everyone in the U.S. prefers to think that, in the criminal justice system, people are “innocent until proven guilty.” While this is theoretically true, it is also likely that Georgia residents who have had personal contact with the legal system understand that being charged with a crime, especially one involving drugs, can lead others to assume one did something wrong. This means that going to a trial by a jury is not guaranteed to result in an acquittal, regardless of the level of culpability of the defendant.
In many cases, people charged with drug crimes, even those who are alleged to have intended to distribute illegal substances, have not directly hurt another person. While any act they may have engaged in may have been illegal, there may be extenuating circumstances explaining why the individual broke the law. Further, because of the nature of “drug busts,” innocent people often get caught up by being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Because of this, and the way many state laws, including Georgia’s, define drug offenses, sometimes even people who did not intend to be dealing with illegal drugs end up in the system. When this occurs, it is important to understand that the consequences can be serious. Being convicted of a drug crime, whether at a trial or through a plea bargain, may affect a person’s future prospects for jobs, housing and other basic living requirements.
Because of this, residents of Georgia facing drug crimes charge may wish to look into having an attorney review the evidence against them. There may be ways, such as the exclusionary rule, that some of this evidence can be made inadmissible, thus weakening the state’s case against the accused. Those who want more information on defending against drug crimes are invited to look at our web page on the subject.