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When is it a crime to have a plastic bag in my pocket?

| Jan 19, 2018 | Felonies |

Believe it or not, there are certain circumstances when possessing a completely innocuous item, such as a plastic bag or a piece of tinfoil, is actually a crime. It all boils down to drug paraphernalia possession and the context in which you possess certain items that — given any other context — would be perfectly fine to have on your person.

The crime of drug paraphernalia possession involves the various accouterments associated with drugs, and not actual drugs themselves. Paraphernalia is often related to items that people use to take drugs, like a pipe, syringe, bong, spoons with burn marks and other items. When it comes to the items used to take drugs, police can find drug residue on these items to prove that they were used to take drugs — thereby showing the court that they were, in fact, categorizable as “drug paraphernalia.”

Then there are the seemingly innocuous items, like little baggies, tinfoil, cardboard boxes, paper bags and so many other things that someone might use to package drugs with. In any other context, these items would be perfectly innocent, but as soon as they’re used in conjunction with a controlled substance they become illegal paraphernalia and possessing them in this context could result in additional charges of paraphernalia possession added to the rap sheet of a Colorado defendant’s charges.

Whether you are facing drug paraphernalia charges without any additional charges related to drug possession, drug dealing or drug trafficking — or whether you’re facing a long list of drug possession, drug dealing and paraphernalia charges — you will have the right to defend yourself against the allegations in court. You may even be able to get your punishments reduced and/or get your charges dismissed or thrown out if you’re able to successfully navigate your criminal defense.

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