Criminal Defense Q&A

When Should I Hire A Defense Attorney?

When you receive notification that you are being accused of a crime, your first call should be to a criminal defense attorney. Time is critical in criminal defense cases, and only a criminal defense attorney has the skills and knowledge you need to build a strong defense. Criminal defense attorney Toby White understands the time-critical nature of these cases, as well as the strong fear they bring. He is ready to put his legal knowledge to work for you to build a solid defense, no matter how serious your charges may be.

Attorney Toby White knows how to help is clients feel safe and confident. He understands the immense stress that these cases brings, and wants to help walk clients through the days ahead to a successful conclusion of their case.

Can I Get Out on Bond?

Hilary M. Barnard (9.2018)

It’s always a good idea to talk with your lawyer about bond options if you’re in jail. Michigan Court Rule 6.106 addresses the factors to be considered. There are a number of factors that the court is supposed to review.  Some of the biggest concerns of the court are the seriousness of the offense, prior criminal history, the risk of the accused leaving the jurisdiction, and the risk to the public from the accused person.

The court may outright deny bond under certain circumstances. Talk with a criminal defense attorney to see what your options may be.

Can Police Search My Car if They Smell Marijuana?

Hilary M. Barnard (8.2018)

Maybe, but smell alone may not cut it. In the 34th Judicial Circuit a judge thought it inappropriate that marihuana smell alone is sufficient to show unlawful activity since persons can possess medical marihuana.

Since the introduction of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act of 2008 a case that directly addresses the smell issue, People v. Zaid(2015), https://law.justia.com/cases/michigan/court-of-appeals-unpublished/2015/320197.html involved the defendant informing law enforcement that he possessed more than allowed. The case was unpublished and has since been vacated. This means the case was not binding when the opinion was written, and further that it is not current law.

In Zaid,the Court’s decision is somewhat confusing as to marihuana smell being sufficient as it states, “we make no ruling on this matter, and this opinion is not to be construed as holding that the odor of marijuana, in and of itself, cannot serve as probable cause when a person holds a valid marijuana registration card; we merely find it unnecessary to answer that question.” The court further clarified in a footnote that the did not answer the question because the defendant had already admitted to having an unlawful amount of marihuana in the vehicle making the smell a nonissue.

It is important, if you are a MMMA card carrier that you adhere to the requirements and rules under that act, if not you may find yourself in a tough situation. If you question whether a search of your vehicle was valid, meet with a defense lawyer and see what your options are.

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