Legal Question in Criminal Law in Ohio

I got busted with possession, and the rude language, hurtful comments, and immaturity of the (butler county, ohio) officers leads me to believe that they don't care about my rights, and makes me wonder if what they did was illegal. Story time: me and my friend were parked side by side in an empty parking lot, looking for directions to a party we were heading to. He had smoked in his car, and it reaked of weed. Mine however did not, but I had a joint, bowl, and small bag of weed. I think the lingering smoke in his car started to get to him as well, so I let him into mine, along with passenger, to give them time to get a grip of themselves. I had not been smoking while driving. Pigs show up, smelled the weed from his car, and asked us where my weed was. I handed everything over, answere very question honestly, and referred to him as sir, and him and his 4 other pig friends provoked us, twisted my friends words around to make him look like he was saying that his mom gives him approval to smoke weed, trying to bring her into it too. (this is why I call them pigs) as they searched my car first, without my approval, they had found my bb gun. I had warned them about it, and that it's made to look like an exact replica of a revolver, but was indeed just a bb gun. When the officer found it he yelled "hands on the car" and started tearing everything out of my pockets. They only stopped when another officer was holding the bb gun, and saw that it was not a real gun by seeing the co2 chamber. They were observing it and started dropping the shells on the ground. I told them to be careful, because the lubericant coating will scratch and damage it. And the pig said, and I quote "I don't give a shit about your lube". When he saw I was irritated, he said (along the lines of) "hey! Look up the definition of a fire arm, because I think this will fit it (trying to get me in even more trouble for a hobby of mine) luckily, I don't think it did because I did not get written up for it. My friend was very nervous (he is under 18 and he was trying to get a hold of his mom, but was having trouble) and they only tormented him, saying "is your mommy or daddy coming to pick you up yet?" also when he was just trying to make conversation with one of them (it's a nervous habit if his) the pig said "I'm not your buddy, so don't talk to me like one. I then just started talking with him while the pigs did their thing, and one asked me to sit in the back of his car. I did so, and left my nervous friend by himself just like they wanted. I was never told my rights, only my court date, and asked me to sign the ticket. I later heard that I am supposed to have an attorney, which I was not aware of. I haven't been able to get ahold of my friends yet to see what happened after I had left and went home. I was the first to leave. I would like to know if anything here was not a legal act on the pigs part. One, because it might be something usefull , and two, because I would like to make a complaint and have them punished if possible. I also need the basic legal advise, what is the best thing for me to do here? I'm a young, pot smokin, yet intelligent person with a job, many hobbys, and I'm very involved in extra curriculars (jass band, symphonic band, marching band) thank you for caring enough to read this far, and I look forward for any advice or information.

Asked on 12/28/13, 9:18 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

John Sauter Cloppert, Latanick, Sauter & Washburn

If the police have probable cause to believe that a vehicle contains contraband (joint, bowl, bag of weed), they may search the vehicle without a warrant. Clearly, because your friend smelled like marijuana (and had recently smoked) and he was in your car, the police clearly had probable cause to believe that your car contained contraband (joint, bowl, or bag of weed). Therefore, their warrantless search was not illegal.

Second, your right to an attorney does not extend to the time or your arrest, it extends only during all custodial interrogations and at all critical stages of prosecution after formal proceedings have begun. You do not have a right to an attorney when you are arrested or given a citation.

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Answered on 12/29/13, 5:58 pm

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