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Criminal Defense From A Former Prosecutor

Rapper faces drug charges from months-old traffic stop

A California rapper is facing drug charges in Georgia after being arrested by police while visiting Atlanta for a performance. The performer, known as Ty Dolla $ign, is facing felony charges for cocaine and THC possession as well as misdemeanor possession of less than an ounce of cannabis. If convicted on all charges, the rapper could serve up to 15 years in prison. He was indicted in December 2018 despite being released without charges at the time of his initial arrest.

A celebrity gossip website published body cam footage of the arrest, which happened during a traffic stop in Fulton County, Ga. Police ordered the rapper and other members of his entourage, including Skrillex, out of their van in the presence of drug-sniffing dogs. The passengers did not answer when police asked about the presence of drugs in the vehicle, and each one of the group was searched by police. Eventually, the footage showed police removing a Backwoods Cigar pouch from the rapper's backpack. The video does not depict the presence of drugs; although, police reportedly claim that the cigar pouch was used to store them.

The search and traffic stop apparently began after police claimed to smell the odor of marijuana in the van and began questioning passengers. The body cam footage shows the rapper being led away in handcuffs, but he was released and returned to his California home long before these drug charges were filed.

People charged with drug crimes may face serious consequences, including jail time, hefty fines and felony criminal records. They may find their opportunities for employment, housing and even education limited as the result of a conviction. However, a criminal defense attorney can help a defendant challenge drug allegations.

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