Maple Valley, WA asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Washington

Q: Can he be charged?

I'm asking this question for an incarcerated friend of mine. No charges have been filed as of yet but the situation is his car was stolen and someone he associated with unbeknownst to him left a box or Backpack or container or whatever I don't know in the car and without my friends knowledge. He then gave the police consent to search upon recovery... Can they charge him for what they find?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Stan Glisson
Stan Glisson
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Tacoma, WA
  • Licensed in Washington

A: Could he be charged? Sure, it doesn't take much to get charged. There is a theory called constructive possession, that basically allows the presumption that whoever is in control of a car is responsible for whatever is in it. If the police found the car unoccupied, and he is the owner, he could potentially get charged.

That is a different question from whether he would be convicted, though. I would tell your friend to talk to a lawyer, and if the police contact him tell them he wants a lawyer before answering any questions. And don't discuss the case over a jail phone, those conversations are almost always recorded and available to the police.

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