Warrantless Search of Dorm Room leads to Arrest November 2015

Sean C. O’Halloran Experienced Ft Myers Criminal Defense Attorney 239-334-8890


At FGCU, the police recently were brought in and two students were arrested for felony possession of marijuana.

Even though marijuana is legal in a number of States, Florida is still behind the curve when it comes to criminalization of weed. For a college student, a felony marijuana possession arrest can be a life changing event. First, you get thrown out of school. Then you have to face the Courts and the possibility of jail and a felony record. School officials sometimes do warrantless searches of private dorm rooms and then call the cops to prosecute. There are legal consequences to illegal searches, and often, the evidence can be later thrown out by the courts.

As a parent, the last thing you want to receive is a call from jail from your child. The simple fact is that some kids do stupid immature things and possessing or selling pot is one of them. Think back about the stupid decisions you may have made in the past or the crazy things you did as a student. We have been defending students now for over thirty years. Stupidity should not be a crime. Students need a second chance, particularly when it comes to smoking weed in college. Most parents, at one time or another did the same thing.

The law is going to change in Florida. It is just a matter of time.

Pot will eventually become legal here as it is in Colorado and Washington. In the meantime, as a parent, you cannot let your son or daughter start off life with a felony, particularly for something that within a matter of years will be legal.Many times, as criminal defense lawyers, we can convince the prosecutors to give the kid a break and offer pre- trial diversion as an alternative to prosecution. This program ultimately results in a dismissal. You also have to think about ultimately having the arrest expunged from the court records. A stupid mistake in college can haunt you for life when it comes to job hunting or later on getting some promotion.

A good lawyer can make a difference and using the public defender is not always a wise decision. If your child was sick or had a medical problem that could affect them for life, would you send them to a public health clinic? Kids make mistakes. That is just part of life’s learning process.Call 239 334 8890 for a free consultation