What kinds of evidence can police seize in a drug bust?

On Behalf of | Jun 18, 2022 | criminal defense

While drug cases vary in many respects, the main question to proving guilt or innocence is whether law enforcement has enough evidence to convict a person of a drug crime. There are many kinds of evidence that the police could take from a crime scene that can factor into a trial on drug charges.

WKTV Channel 2 reported on a recent drug bust in Lewis County in New York. The account described a variety of evidence that law enforcement removed from the crime scene.

Illegal drugs

The WKTV report detailed a number of drugs taken by law enforcement. The illegal substances consisted of various quantities of crystal methamphetamine, cocaine, hallucinogenic mushrooms, and possible LSD. Authorities also seized twelve alprazolam pills. Alprazolam is a prescription drug that can be addictive and motivate addicted users to illegally acquire more of it.

Paraphernalia

Drug paraphernalia consists of devices and items used to prepare, process and package illegal substances. In the Lewis County case, law enforcement found scales and packing materials. Authorities also took $2,990 in cash. The police may consider money as evidence because it might indicate a sale of drugs.

Weapons

In addition to illegal substances and paraphernalia, police can seize other kinds of evidence that relate to a drug crime or indicate other criminal acts have taken place. In the Lewis County bust, authorities took various weapons from the scene, including ghost guns and a double-barrel shotgun, in addition to ammunition and magazines. Other weapons included a throwing star and brass knuckles.

Validating evidence is critical

A high volume of evidence can result in multiple criminal counts and a long prison sentence. However, law enforcement cannot always prove the veracity of evidence. Sometimes police take drugs from a scene only to find out later that the suspected substances were not illegal.

Additionally, chain of custody issues can render evidence too suspect to prove a criminal count. The police may not be able to prove that illegal drugs or weapons truly belonged to you. These questions of evidence may be crucial since invalidating evidence could lead to the dismissal of one or more charges.