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Criminal Defense From A Former Prosecutor

California rapper facing drug charges

The California native and chart-topping rapper Tyrone William Griffin Jr., who is more widely known by his stage name Ty Dolla $ign, was taken into custody on drug possession charges on the afternoon of Sept. 5 during a routine traffic stop in Georgia according to media reports. Atlanta police pulled Griffin's vehicle over just hours before the rapper was scheduled to appear on stage in Lakewood. He has been charged with marijuana and cocaine possession and is being held on a $6,000 bond at the Fulton County Jail according to media outlets.

Police say that they decided to search the vehicle that Griffin and six other people were traveling in after noticing the odor of marijuana emanating from its interior, according to an Atlanta Police Department report. Griffin's attorney later asserted that his client was only traveling with five individuals and questioned several other aspects of the police account of events.

The rapper has been charged with possessing less than an ounce of the drug. Griffin's attorney says that the authorities have no evidence linking his client to the seized drugs directly. He also points out that Griffin has no criminal record and accuses police of singling him out due to his celebrity status.

Criminal defense attorneys with experience in cases involving drug crimes could urge prosecutors to consider dropping narcotics possession charges when presented with facts such as these. Even minor criminal charges must be proved beyond reasonable doubt, and attorneys could point out to prosecutors that meeting this standard of proof may be difficult when police reports contain errors, omissions or inconsistencies.

Source: Variety, "Ty Dolla Sign Arrested on Drug Charges Two Hours Before His Concert", Sept. 6, 2018

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