Imagine yourself riding as a passenger in a car. You decide to eat a can of SpaghettiOs for lunch. Not having a bowl with you, you eat the meal straight from the can, using a metal spoon you borrowed from a friend. Finishing your meal, you throw the can away, but hang on to the spoon as you ride back to your friend’s home.
Suddenly, the police pull the car over because the car’s taillight is out. They search the car, find the spoon in your bag, and seeing that it has some substance on it, decide to field test the spoon. The officer places you under arrest for possession of methamphetamine.
That is exactly what happened to 23-year-old Ashley Huff this past July. The police claimed that the SpaghettiO’s sauce on the spoon they found in her bag was used for meth. The officer stated in his report that he “found it strange that she would eat SpaghettiOs with a metal spoon while riding in a vehicle, and then put the spoon back in a bag.”
Three Months of a Legal Nightmare
Huff spent the next two weeks in jail before being released on the condition that she attend a series of appointments with the court. When she missed one, she was arrested again and incarcerated. She was unable to afford the bond to be released, so she stayed in jail for seven weeks until the lab test proved what she had said all along.
“It was so stressful,” Huff, said. “Nobody believed me. I said I had SpaghettiOs on my spoon. Nobody believed that. Everybody thought it was hilarious, but that was exactly what it was.”1
Not having her own attorney, Huff seriously considered pleading guilty to a crime she knew she did not commit just to be released from jail. She missed her son’s birthday and lost her job as a result of being in jail. Huff’s public defender said, “You just get worn out, your spirit gets worn down … You reach a point where you’ll do anything just to get out of jail.”
The public defender speculated that the reason it took so long for the crime lab to confirm she was innocent was the sheer number of cases they have. In fact, he told the press that three months was a “quick” result.2
The Importance of a Good Legal Counsel
Huff’s case is an example of why it is critical to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible if you are arrested. Having someone who can fight for you early in the process can help you stay out of jail before trial.
If you have to spend time in jail, a good criminal defense attorney can find ways to speed up the process so that you are not stuck waiting for a lab to get to your case on their own schedule. Your attorney can find ways to challenge the results of flawed field tests and find the holes in the officer’s version of the events leading to your arrest. The attorney can also walk you through your options so that you never have to consider pleading guilty to a crime you did not commit.
Contact the Defense Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich
A charge of possession or selling methamphetamine under California Health and Safety Code Section 11379 (HS 11379) is a serious accusation with potentially life-changing consequences. If you or someone you care about has been charged with possession of meth or any other controlled substance, you will need an experienced and aggressive attorney to help you with your case. At Wallin & Klarich, our attorneys have been successfully defending clients against drug-related charges for more than 30 years. Let us help you, too. Contact us today for a free, no obligation phone consultation.
With offices in Los Angeles, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Tustin, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville, there is a Wallin & Klarich attorney experienced in drug laws near you no matter where you work or live.
Call us today at (888) 280-6839 so we can begin working on your case. We will be there when you call.