Saturday, February 7, 2015

Letter: Guns and Drugs: NJ Motor Vehicle Searches

The expressed opinions or views of this letter does not necessarily represent the opinion of the MiddletownMike blog:

Dear Editor,

Many New Jerseyans are frequently arrested on criminal drug and gun charges, but wouldn't have ended up in handcuffs if they better understood their motor vehicle search rights.

In the State of New Jersey, even if police have established "probable cause", under the 2009 court decision in State v. Pena-Flores, they still need to get a warrant from a judge to search a motor vehicle if they don't have consent. You should never consent to a search, no matter what the police tell you.

Police will frequently lie, manipulate and coerce suspects into waiving their constitutional rights by confessing, consenting to a search or handing them drugs, on the false pretense it will somehow help them.

Police will also frequently claim that they are about to get a warrant, tow truck or drug dogs to come out. These are often empty threats and don’t consent no matter what.

Never admit to or discuss anything with police and always demand a lawyer.

Trick questions, which would result in an admission of guilt are common, so keep your mouth shut, drugs and guns locked in the trunk and Breaking Bad’s Saul Goodman on speed dial.

Eric Hafner
Toms River,

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