Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.
Good afternoon. Law enforcement isn't required to make an arrest or issue a citation every time a crime is committed. You can theoretically be charged for possession anytime before the statute of limitations runs, but you would normally expect to be charged as soon as possible since the burden of proof falls heavily on the prosecution and the passage of time tends to put the evidence in jeopardy. Unless there's more to what you're telling me, they won't come back and arrest you, but it's possible that you'll receive a summons to appear in court over the next few weeks.I can't speculate why they would wait to charge you in your specific case, but it could be something as simple as them deciding to have the evidence reviewed by the District Attorney's Office. If you're going to be charged, it would most likely happen in the next month or so. Waiting and wondering is sometimes worse than getting a charge itself, but keep in mind that (for the typical case) jail time would not be a normal outcome for something like this, even if charged and convicted -- usually, it would (at most) result in a fine and unsupervised probation.Let me know if further clarification is needed, and please feel free to leave a rating once you are finished (it does not cost anything extra to do so, and it is the only way I may be credited for my answers.) Thank you!
Hi, so sorry for the delay -- a personal matter arose on my end that required immediate and undivided attention. I'm very glad to continue working with you until you are completely satisfied.Do you have any reason to be concerned that they will pull your text messages? Can hey even do that type of thing? That would normally be extremely unlikely. First, the nature of the offense is not such that would require that level of investigation or that it would be a good use of their limited resources. Second, it would require a search warrant. To get a warrant, they would need to persuade a judge that there's probable cause to believe that the search would produce evidence of the crime that you are alleged to have committed. Based on what you've said, it is manifestly unclear on the nexus between your text messages and the crime of keeping marijuana for your personal use.Are these sessions covered under the attorney-client privilege? No.What is the time limit for them to give a ticket or arrest? For non-malicious misdemeanors, the statute of limitations is 2 years for both possession and less than 1/2 ounce for personal use. A first time offense for both would typically get a very generous plea bargain -- something like a $200 fine and court costs, plus informal probation.Should you get a lawyer? I'll never answer "no" to that question, but the cost might outweigh the benefit. It's up to you.Can you leave town? For something like this, that would normally never become an issue at all. This isn't a murder charge. As long as you're not leaving to run from the charge or in violation of court order, nobody will care if you leave the state.