It is no secret that criminal charges can lead to serious, lifelong consequences for defendants. Unfortunately, some individuals in Alabama end up facing charges because of the wrongful or even illegal actions of police officers. Defendants do not have to give up hope in these types of situations, as criminal law does have protections against things like unreasonable searches and seizures.
A judge recently dismissed the charges against an Alabama couple who were caught up in a drug raid in 2018. For reasons that are unclear, police executed a raid on the couple’s home in January 2018. The raid started without warning, and officials with the narcotics unit broke down the home’s door and tossed in a flashbang grenade, which landed at the husband’s feet. He and his wife were detained while police searched the home.
Officers only discovered less than $50 worth of marijuana for recreational use, and they ignored the couple’s son who claimed the drug as his own. They also found a sleeping pill outside of its prescription bottle, which they were also charged for despite the presence of a prescription bottle bearing the husband’s name. Police seized these two items as well as various valuables, the couple’s firearms and $8,000 of their cash savings.
The couple accused the police department of not only using excessive force during the raid, but also of losing their property and violating their constitutional right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. They also say their right to due process was violated. On top of these violations, the couple also missed an important deadline with their bank while they were in custody and lost their home to foreclosure.
Although the charges have since been dropped, the impact on this Alabama couple’s life is still significant. This is why it is important for defendants to begin working toward their criminal law defense in as timely a manner as possible. An early review of all charges and evidence might help some defendants determine whether their rights were violated during or after their arrests.