A routine traffic stop in Oklahoma on the evening of Nov. 30 led to the discovery of marijuana, methamphetamine, firearms, and drug paraphernalia, the Clinton Police Department has reported. A 23-year-old man, a 20-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman were taken into custody at the scene in connection with the seized drugs, weapons and other items. They face a raft of charges including counts of drug and weapons possession, narcotics trafficking, carrying false identification documents, and using a firearm during the commission of a felony.
The chain of events began at about 10:00 p.m. when CPD officers pulled a vehicle over for an undisclosed motor vehicle violation near the intersection of East Frisco Avenue and South Glen Smith Road in Clinton. When they approached the car, officers claim to have noticed a strong odor that they identified as marijuana. The officers say that they decided to search the vehicle after establishing that none of its occupants had been licensed to use the drug for medicinal purposes.
During the ensuing vehicle search, officers allegedly found two loaded handguns in the car’s passenger compartment. A more thorough search is said to have yielded a shotgun, a plastic bag containing about one pound of a crystalline substance identified as methamphetamine and approximately 5 grams of marijuana. An undisclosed quantity of U.S. currency was also found that police claim was generated by selling drugs.
Police officers are permitted to search vehicles, properties or residences without first obtaining a search warrant when they have probable cause to believe that evidence of ongoing criminal activity will be discovered. When their clients have been charged in connection with items recovered during a warrantless search, experienced criminal defense attorneys may scrutinize police reports closely to determine whether or not probable cause existed. If police acted without sufficient probable cause, attorneys may seek to have the seized items excluded and criminal charges dismissed.