Case No: 12-XXXXXXCF10A
Facts: The defendant along with his girlfriend were observed by Fort Lauderdale Police detectives to have entered a known narcotics location. The detectives indicate that the defendant exited the residence after a short period of time. The detectives believing that entering and exiting a residence after a short period of time was indicative of a drug transaction, conducted a consensual encounter with the defendant.
During the consensual encounter, one of the detectives asked the defendant for permission to conduct a pat-down search. It is alleged that during the pat-down search, the detective felt what he believed from knowledge, training and experience to be pills wrapped in a napkin. The detective then went into the defendant’s pocket and removed the napkin. The detective seized ten, yellow in color oval pills which were confirmed to be Hydrocodone. The defendant was arrested and charged with trafficking in Hydrocodone between 4 and 14 grams.
Outcome; Mr. Sobel took the depositions of the detectives involved in the stop and search of the defendant. Based upon information from the depositions, Mr. Sobel was able to file a Motion to Suppress. Mr. Sobel argued that there was no possible way that the office knew of the incriminating nature of the pills prior to their seizure as was required by law.
Prior to the hearing on the Motion to Suppress, the Office of the State Attorney offered to reduce the charge to a lesser charge and allow the defendant to enter a plea and receive a withheld adjudication. The defendant avoided the mandatory minimum three year sentence and was not branded a convicted felon.