Can I be charged for a crime as a visitor in a friends house who has room mates ?

Asked over 1 year ago - Rockaway, NJ

Visiting a friend who ran out for awhile.Someone tried breaking in while I was there. Cops came, I let them in.They asked who I was, I told them I was visiting. No one there to vouch for me.They asked if they could search apartment, I said I am not able to consent, I do not live here. They searched ,found large amount of marijuana in a box in another roommates room. I was arrested for trespassing,breaking & entering and possession. Friend came to police department to vouch I was a guest. The room mate of my friends door was closed,Police tried to get me to confess. I live in another county,not in my friends apartment he shares with 3 others.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Scott C. Buerkle

    Pro

    Contributor Level 13

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It sounds like a charge can be justified as the police probably have probable cause to believe the drugs were yours. The trespassing/breaking and entering sounds less justifiable if the homeowner asserted you were a guest. You certainly have defenses to the drug charge and the facts as you describe would probably lead to the drugs being suppressed or put on another person other than you. You must find a lawyer to assert your defenses. Call for more info. Good luck.

  2. Mark M Cheser

    Contributor Level 20

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Much more information is needed to fully answer the questions. You need an experienced criminal defense attorney ASAP. From your post the State will have a hard time proving a case against you. But they certainly may try. The search of the roommates area and the search (other than looking around) of the apartment are unconstitutional base on your post. But the cops may say they didn't know who you where, you could be a burglar, and they were checking for signs of burglary. Why they looked in the box may depend on where it was located. Call with more information.

  3. Eric M. Mark

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Based on your facts, the State would have a difficult time proving its case against you. However, that often does not prevent them from trying. The best thing you can do is hire a lawyer ASAP to begin asserting your defenses and protecting your interests. There are steps that should be taken sooner rather than later to strengthen your defense and to try to resolve your case.

  4. Dean P Murray

    Contributor Level 18

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Consult a New Jersey lawyer. From your account, it sounds as though the search may have been unlawful.

    IMPORTANT: Mr. Murray's response is NOT legal advice and does NOT create an attorney-client relationship. You... more
  5. Yolanda Navarrete

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Because they searched without a warrant or permission, Iyou have a very good defense. Plead "not guilty" and get yourself an attorney or public defender.

    Please be advised my answers to questions does not constitute legal advise and you should not rely on it, due to... more
  6. John Thomas Doyle

    Contributor Level 13

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . They can charge you with these offenses but from your version of the facts you have valid defenses to all the charges. You need to hire a criminal defense attorney right away.

    This answer does not constitute legal advice, create an attorney-client relationship, or constitute attorney... more
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