Macy Jaggers | Defense Attorney LLPC


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Drug Crime


Rick*

Rick was in front of his girlfriend's house in Dallas County, talking to a friend who was parked in the driveway when the police pulled up. Suspecting a drug deal was occurring, the cops approached Rick and his friend. After running Rick's ID, they discovered he had traffic warrants and placed him under arrest. Rick explained that he could not go to jail because he was babysitting the two children that were asleep in the house while their mother was at work. One of the officers called the mother, who worked less than five minutes away, and she headed home. Another officer, however, claimed she needed to go into the house to check on the safety of the children. The officers suspected there were drugs in the home but did not have a warrant to search it. They were looking for any way to get inside. Rick refused to give the officer the house key. The officer took the keys from Rick's pocket and tried each one until she found the one that worked. (Meanwhile, the children's mother had arrived.) The officer went into the house and, without stopping to check on the safety of the sleeping children, began searching. She eventually found cocaine and charged Rick with a felony. I set the case set for a hearing on the illegal search and arrest. The judge agreed that the officer had no legal right to enter the home, granted the motion, and the criminal case was dismissed.

Larry*

Larry had just pulled into his driveway when he was approached by an officer who noticed his registration was expired. A license check revealed that Larry had outstanding warrants for traffic tickets. Upon book-in at the Dallas County jail, the officer found a baggie in Larry's pocket that contained a small amount of cocaine. Larry was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance. Larry was adamant that he would lose his job if he pled to a felony, so I set his case for trial. I combed through the discovery collected over several court dates and discovered a defect in the warrant that was used to arrest Larry. I was able to convince the DA that he was going to have difficulty proving its validity at trial, and he offered to reduce Larry's felony to a misdemeanor and place him on probation, which saved his job.

Richard*

Richard was walking to the DART station when he was approached by a police officer who smelled alcohol on his breath and arrested him for public intoxication. During a search incident to arrest, the officer found a small amount of cocaine in Richard's backpack and charged him with felony possession. When I analyzed the discovery in the criminal case, I doubted the officer had enough facts for the original PI arrest so I set the case for a suppression hearing. The District Attorney knew the facts were shaky and offered to reduce Richard's felony to a misdemeanor and give Richard deferred probation. The possibility of losing the hearing and having a felony conviction on his criminal record prompted Richard to take the offer. His misdemeanor has now been dismissed.

Donald*

Donald was stopped on a traffic violation in Dallas County when the officer smelled alcohol on his breath. Suspecting Donald of drunk driving, the officer then conducted Standardized Field Sobriety Tests, which Donald passed. When Donald refused the officer's request to search his car, the officer called the canine unit and detained Donald while he waited for the drug dog to arrive. Because the drug dog alerted on the car, the officer had probable cause to search it without Donald's permission. The officer found a small quantity of marijuana in the car and charged Donald with a misdemeanor criminal case. When I watched the video of the arrest, I paid special attention to the time the officer continued to detain Donald even after he cleared him of DWI. Because the delay was so long, I knew the officer had violated Donald's constitutional rights and set the case for a hearing. At the hearing, the judge agreed that Donald's search and arrest was illegal. His case was dismissed.

Randy*

Randy is a truck driver who lives out of state. He was travelling through Dallas when his truck broke down. (It also happened to be Randy's birthday, so he had met up with an old friend for lunch--who gave him a joint as a birthday present!). Randy walked to the closest gas station for help and then needed to get back to his truck to meet the tow truck. "Luckily" a kind police officer offered him a ride back. Of course, the officer had to first pat down Randy for officer safety before allowing him into his squad car. Guess what the officer found? And that's how 45-year-old Randy found himself under arrest for the first time ever. After he bonded out of jail on his Possession of Marijuana charge , Randy collected his truck and returned to work. Because of his long, solid work history with the company (and the fact that he has passed every drug test they have ever given him because he doesn't actually smoke pot!), Randy was able to keep his job, I asked Randy to get me proof of clean drug tests from his employer and instructed him to take a drug education course. That, along with a donation to a local food bank, convinced the DA to DISMISS his possession case without ever returning to Dallas.

Sam*

Sam called me in a panic after learning he had an active warrant for a drug charge from three years earlier. It turns out, Sam had been convicted at trial and had lost his case on appeal. Sam's appellate attorney had sent him a letter a few months prior, informing him that his appeal had been lost. He was awaiting a call or letter from probation that would tell him what to do next. After several weeks passed, he contacted the Court to find out what he was supposed to be doing. That is when he was informed that a warrant had been issued for his arrest. Apparently after the Appellate Court's order came down, the Trial Court sent Sam a letter asking him to appear in Court to be placed on probation. Unfortunately, the letter went to an address he hadn't lived at in more than a year. After Sam hired me, I went and met with his Judge. I explained to that Sam wanted to be compliant with his probation requirements but there had simply been a miscommunication. In fact, Sam had already completed some of the probation conditions. The Judge allowed me to bring Sam to Court without the threat of arrest. The warrant was lifted, and he was placed on probation without incident.

Brian*

Brian was pulled over for failing to use his turn signal. Brian told me the police pulled him out of his car and searched it because they saw a Crown Royal bag. I knew that there would be additional probable cause stated in the offense report. I was wrong. Surprisingly, the officer seemed to think that the presence of a Crown Royal bag alone was enough reason to search a vehicle. The officer stated that Crown Royal bags are often used to carry marijuana. Never mind their hundreds of other uses, including CARRYING CROWN ROYAL. As luck would have it, the officer did find marijuana in Brian's car--as well as a gun. Brian was arrested for possession of both. After confirming there was no in-car video and no other evidence of any legal probable cause, I set the cases for a Motion to Suppress hearing. The DA reviewed the evidence in the case and was as surprised as I was. He agreed that the search was illegal and dismissed the cases without a hearing.

Abel*

Abel came to me in a panic. The police had been to his house looking for him. He knew why. He had stopped reporting on his felony probation for two State Jail theft cases almost a year earlier. He had gotten behind on his payments and been arrested on a Pubilc Intoxication and was convinced that his probation would be revoked. So he did the worst thing you can do on probation: He stopped reporting. Now with his SEVENTH child on the way, it had finally caught up to them. To make matters worse, Abel's probation had expired. The Judge couldn't reinstate his probation if she wanted to. His only options were a conviction (with up to 2 years in the State Jail) or, if he was REALLY lucky, an unsuccessful discharge from probation without a conviction. I explained to Abel that, if he could get together the more than $6,000 he owed in restitution, fines, and court costs, that I MIGHT be able to talk the DA into recommending an unsuccessful discharge without convictions. Abel told me this was impossible, so now the goal was to figure out a way to keep him out of prison. Sadly, before these two cases, Abel had a clean record. I used this to my advantage and, after a few careful meetings, I was able to convince the DA to agree to a coveted 12.44. This meant that Abel would take convictions in both cases. However, this also meant he was off the hook for the $6,000, and more importantly, he wouldn't have to do any prison time.

Abel*

Abel came to me in a panic. The police had been to his house looking for him. He knew why. He had stopped reporting on his felony probation for two State Jail theft cases almost a year earlier. He had gotten behind on his payments and been arrested on a Pubilc Intoxication and was convinced that his probation would be revoked. So he did the worst thing you can do on probation: He stopped reporting. Now with his SEVENTH child on the way, it had finally caught up to them. To make matters worse, Abel's probation had expired. The Judge couldn't reinstate his probation if she wanted to. His only options were a conviction (with up to 2 years in the State Jail) or, if he was REALLY lucky, an unsuccessful discharge from probation without a conviction. I explained to Abel that, if he could get together the more than $6,000 he owed in restitution, fines, and court costs, that I MIGHT be able to talk the DA into recommending an unsuccessful discharge without convictions. Abel told me this was impossible, so now the goal was to figure out a way to keep him out of prison. Sadly, before these two cases, Abel had a clean record. I used this to my advantage and, after a few careful meetings, I was able to convince the DA to agree to a coveted 12.44. This meant that Abel would take convictions in both cases. However, this also meant he was off the hook for the $6,000, and more importantly, he wouldn't have to do any prison time.

*Names have been changed to protect the innocent.