I was pulled over for speeding, and the officer said he smelled marijuana. He informed me that he had probable cause to search the vehicle, and did so. He found the substance, and issued me a simple possession ticket and a speeding ticket. I was never put in handcuffs, fingerprinted, or taken to jail. This was my first offense ever, I have never had any run in with authorities, except for the occasional speeding ticket. The officer mentioned that since I live out of state that I didn't have to go to court, that I just had to pay the tickets before the court date, but on the tickets it says court date required. Do I have to go to court, or can I just pay the tickets? If I just pay the tickets will the simple possession charge show up on a background check or criminal record?
Your best bet would be to hire a criminal defense attorney and make a court appearance on the advise of your attorney, so that this may not show up on a background check. Paying the fine would be an admission of guilt.
Dr. Michael G. Sribnick, Esq. criminal defense attorney in Charleston, S.C.
Michael G. Sribnick, M.D., J.D., LLC
The answer to this question does not establish an attorney/client relationship nor does it constitute legal advice.
if you fail to appear, in all likelihood you will be found guilty in your absence. If you send in the fine amount, you will deemed to have pled guilty and forfeited the fine. Most likely, in both instances, the conviction will show on your record. You should contact and attorney and retain an attorney to ask the court for a conditional discharge.
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Please search for a lawyer on AVVO in the area where you were ticketed. Many offer free consultations, so you should talk to a lawyer before you end up with a criminal record that will jeopardize your future. There are many ways a lawyer can handle this.
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