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My 11 yr old found 10 grams of marijuana and took it to school…

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My 11 yr old found...
My 11 yr old found 10 grams of marijuana and took it to school he offered to sale it for five dollars. When the questioned him they read hom miranda rights and im not sure he understood them. he told the school am man riding a bike dropped it and he picked it up. At the school hearing he said he found it at an apartment complex. i asked him why he lied and he said they didnt believe him the first time he told the truth. my question is how much trouble can he get into for this and what can i do to point out he didnt understamd what theiranda rights ment.
Submitted: 5 years ago.Category: Criminal Law
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
11/7/2012
Criminal Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer replied 5 years ago
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 126,783
Experience: Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Was he charged or was he merely interviewed by the school officials and went to a school hearing? Is the DA taking charges in the case?
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
he was interviewed by the principal and the resource officer first and then yesterday we had a long term suspesion hearing. The officer was going to arrest him that day but my aunt who knows the officer was allowed to take him home
Criminal Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer replied 5 years ago
Any statement your child made without properly understanding his Miranda rights cannot be used in any CRIMINAL court proceeding against him. It is going to be his attorney's burden if your son is charged by the DA to prove that your son did not have a proper adult representative there (such as a child advocate) to insure that he understood his rights before he gave any statements and he did not understand those rights and the court would then make the determination on excluding the statement.

As far as the administrative hearing and use of his statement in any non-criminal matter, by law Miranda does not apply to statements given in any administrative matter, including these school matters. Thus, they can use the statement against your son in the board hearing.

Schools have a zero tolerance policy for drugs and possession and attempted sale is grounds for expulsion, regardless of where he found it I am afraid. Thus, as far as school is concerned, you need to begin working with the school board to prevent him from being expelled and at least work on some type of suspension or maybe sending him to an alternative school, since his education and continuing his education needs to be your priority.

As far as criminal charges, he could be charged by the DA for possession with the intent to distribute, which is a felony in Arizona which would be punishable by up to 2 years in jail (or juvenile detention). As a first offense, the DA rarely gets jail and generally gives a diversion program where your son would undergo counseling and get probation. THIS is where the fact he did not properly understand his Miranda rights would mean anything your son said would not be able to be used against him and as such the DA could only go off of the actual evidence found.


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