Friday, September 30, 2016

Supreme Court Kicks Out State's Drug Expert in Intent to Distribute Cases

State v. Cain, New Jersey Supreme Court (March, 2016)

New Jersey Supreme Court breaks new ground and essentially overrules State v. Odom, which was a virtual killer for criminal defendants going to trial for intent to distribute CDS case.

Under State v. Odom, prosecutor’s used so-called law enforcement experts to give opinions before the jury that the method of packaging, purity and quantity, among other things, of the CDS found, was consistent with possession with intent to distribute, and not for personal use.

Finally, our Supreme Court has ruled that such statements by prosecution witnesses encourages upon the ultimate issue of the guilt of the defendant, is highly prejudicial and no longer permissible.  New Jersey now follows similar rulings in Florida, Connecticut and New York.

The Cain case originated out of Bergen County, in which a Hackensack Police Detective testified as that the Marijuana recovered at the defendant’s residence was with the intent to distribute.

The Court also frowned on the prosecutor’s repeated reference to the fact that the CDS drugs were seized after a judicial search warrant on the defendant’s residence. Although the court did not issue its reversal of the defendant’s conviction on that basis because it reversed on the expert opinion.

If you are charged with a drug offense your choice of a criminal defense attorney is very important, and experience in handling these types of cases is very important. 

Before you hire a criminaldefense attorney you must investigate his or her experience in handling the complex drug case.  It could mean the difference of going to jail or your freedom.

AttorneyVincent J. Sanzone, Jr., Esq., has been practicing criminal law, and his a criminal trial attorney with 26-years of experience in trying criminal cases throughout New Jersey Superior Court and Federal District Court of New Jersey.

(908) 354-7006
Bergen County Criminal Defense Attorney