Excerpt from Attorney Ralph Behr’s Book. Street Smarts- Criminal Law 1.01 – What is Possession?

IMG_6709-2-194x300DRUG BUSTS

100 ‘most asked ‘ questions


To possess means to have personal charge of, or, exercise the right of ownership, management or control over the “thing” possessed.

Mere proximity to a thing does not prove possession.  There has to be knowledge of its presence and control.

The law presumes you have knowledge of things within your control. That means anything on your person, in your clothing or within ready reach can be presumed to be in your possession.

You can be held accountable for possession of something that is not physically on your person. So, if you give a controlled substance to someone and it remains within your control, you can be charged with possession.

There are no easy rules or bright line distinctions between possession and mere proximity. It is always a question for the jury to decide.

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