To prove the crime of possession or use of a narcotic drug require the State to establish:
- The accused knowingly possessed or used a narcotic, and
- The substance was a narcotic drug.
It is common for someone accused of possession of a narcotic drug he/she will explain to the police that the drug was not his/hers. This is not a defense to the charge.
The issue is not ownership of the drug. If the accused has possession of the drug and knows it, this establishes the knowing element in the proof of the crime.
The circumstances of the discovery of the drug are important in establishing quilt or innocence.
Penalty for Possession or Use of a Narcotic Drug
- To possess or use a narcotic drug is a class four felony.
Defenses to Possession or Use of a Narcotic Drug
- not guilty
- without knowledge
- substance not a narcotic drug
- insufficient evidence
- mistaken identification
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