Paul D. Cramm

Drug and Narcotics Criminal Defense

Johnson County, Kansas Drug Possession Defense Attorney

If you are facing felony charges of drug possession, narcotics distribution or trafficking, cultivation of marijuana, or manufacturing methamphetamine in Johnson County, Kansas, your freedom is at stake. Even a simple misdemeanor charge of possession of marijuana can have serious negative implications. In addition to potential prison or jail time if convicted, you may face restricted employment and housing opportunities due to a criminal record. Whether your charges involve methamphetamine, marijuana, cocaine or prescription drugs, protect your rights and reputation by obtaining experienced, aggressive legal representation immediately.

Aggressive and Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Overland Park, Kansas

Although the District Court of Johnson County, Kansas is located in Olathe, Johnson County District Court has exclusive jurisdiction over State Felony Drug and Narcotics Offenses committed in the cities within Johnson County, including DeSoto, Gardner, Leawood, Lenexa, Mission, Merriam, Olathe, Overland Park, Prairie Village and Shawnee.  Each of these cities may elect to prosecute certain misdemeanor drug crimes occurring within their city limits, but Municipal Courts do not have the jurisdiction to prosecute felony drug charges.  All felony narcotics cases will be prosecuted in the District Court of Johnson County.

If you need a Kansas City drug crime defense lawyer to represent your interests against state drug charges, contact my office in Overland Park to arrange an initial consultation. Whether you are charged with simple marijuana possession, or you have been accused of unlawful distribution of prescription medications, I can help you.

Federal Drug Crimes vs. State Drug Crimes

Unlike federal drug cases, which usually involve large volumes of controlled substances, intricate distribution networks and long-running investigations, state drug charges can involve any substance, in any amount. Often, state cases involve illegal drugs seized at the scene of another crime, such as:

  • DUI
  • Domestic violence
  • Vehicular homicide
  • Traffic offenses

Depending on your prior criminal history, the quantity and nature of the drug involved, and your eligibility for diversion or treatment, the prospects for a satisfactory resolution of your case through a plea negotiations are often promising.  There are many situations, however, where it’s to your advantage to fight the charges in court – every case is different.

You may be the passenger in a car and you may have no idea that the driver has a small amount of marijuana or cocaine hidden in the glove box or console between the seats.  Or you may have offered a friend a ride and you have no idea that she is carrying someone else’s prescription medications in her purse.  If the car is stopped for an ordinary traffic infraction that leads to search of the vehicle and discovery of the illegal substance, you may have valid fact defenses against a possession charge.  Keep in mind, the prosecutor must prove beyond reasonable doubt that you knew the drug was in the car and that you intended to exert control over that drug.  Never assume that you must accept a guilty plea if you are in fact innocent of the charge.

Illegal Search and Seizure and Suppression of Evidence

For prosecutors, the ability to admit the drugs or contraband seized during your arrest as evidence against you in Court is absolutely necessary to secure a conviction against a defendant for State drug crimes. As an experienced criminal defense attorney, my first line of defense involves thorough and tireless investigation of the facts and circumstances of your arrest and any evidentiary search by law enforcement to determine if the contraband evidence should be suppressed as the result of an illegal search.  Police must have valid probable cause to conduct a search of your person, your car, or you purse or backpack.  Law enforcement may not detain you and search your possessions based solely on a ‘hunch’ – even if that hunch ends up being correct.  If police do not have valid probable cause to search and end up discovering contraband by violating your 4th amendment right to be free from unlawful search and seizure, courts are obligated to suppress the evidence and prohibit the prosecutor from using the evidence against you.

Because drug crimes arrests are often incidental to another type of arrest – like an ordinary traffic stop, a domestic disturbance or a simple noise complaint – police are frequently unprepared for a narcotics investigation.  They may overlook or skip important steps in developing valid probable cause prior to searching your pockets or your home.  This means the opportunity for suppression of the evidence on the basis of insufficient probable cause or an illegal search and seizure are often greater in the state courts than they are in the federal system. Because felony drug charges in a Johnson County Criminal prosecution might be unrelated to the other charges in the case, an experienced defense lawyer has more options in negotiating a favorable plea agreement when suppression of evidence is not possible.

The only way to know if you should fight the admissibility of the evidence in your case or challenge the sufficiency of the evidence to prove your guilt is to have an experienced and aggressive criminal defense lawyer represent you.  When suppression of evidence is unlikely and trial presents disproportionate risk, you need the representation of a respected defense attorney to negotiate the most favorable outcome on your behalf.
The Importance of Aggressive Drug and Narcotics Related Criminal Defense


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