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LegalKnowledge, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  10+ years handling Legal, Real Estate, Criminal Law, Family Law, Traffic matters.
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In New Jersey, can there be a motion to suppress evidence

Customer Question

In New Jersey, can there be a motion to suppress evidence happen before evidence is presented? denied from beginning
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 2 years ago.

Good afternoon. What type of case is it? Do you know what the purpose of the evidence is intended for and will show?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Son was picked up in friend's car and arrested for outstanding warrants. One for probation violation and one for none payment of fines. Put in police car and taken away. Evidently drugs found in car and owner denied they were not his. Son was just notifed of charges. Was incarcerated in one county for 39 days for fines and moved to second county for probation charges 3 weeks ago. Wants to fight drug charge since the drugs were not his. Motion denied before court date of 8/14
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 2 years ago.

What motion was denied? Did your sons attorney file a motion to suppress prior to the State turning over discovery?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
not sure
just found out about drug charges
Expert:  LegalKnowledge replied 2 years ago.

Thank you. What happens is that a defendant will make a demand for discovery. The prosecutor will then turn over all the evidence which they are using against your son. It would be at that time that a motion to suppress any evidence could be filed, to prevent it from coming in at trial. A defendant can not file a motion to suppress on something that may not be used as evidence in the prosecution, by the State, since it would not yet be ripe or needed, if they are not going to use it. As such, he would have to wait. However, what I do want to share with you is if he is denying the drugs were his and say that they belonged to the driver/owner, that is a question for trial and not something the Judge will decide on in a motion to suppress. The motion to suppress would deal with an illegal stop or an illegal search. He can fight it and the burden is on the State prove the charge against him beyond a reasonable doubt. He can take the stand and testify on his own behalf that the drugs were not his, he was a passenger and that they belonged to the owner.