Dallas Man Arrested on Drug Charges Stemming From Traffic Stop
A Dallas man was arrested on numerous drugs and weapons charges this past Tuesday after Dallas Police officers stopped his vehicle and preformed a canine search. Police say that they observed Paul Schrimsher coming out of a suspected drug location (his home) and was pulled over for the traffic violation of having an expired vehicle registration. Police requested to search Schrimsher’s car and after he refused to give consent they summoned a canine unit and the dog alerted to a back passenger door. Officers discovered methamphetamine, 2.5 pounds of GHB, seven guns and lots of ammunition. Police later searched Schrimsher’s home and found more meth, GHB and marijuana.
As in many drug cases they key to the defense will be the legality of the initial search. If the news paper accounts are correct officers first stopped the defendant for a traffic violation and then summoned a canine unit for a search. Exactly how long it took the canine unit to get there to search the car is critical in light of a new Supreme Court ruling. If there is a delay between the time the officers have issued a ticket and the time the canine unit arrives then there could be grounds to suppress the search. The courts have ruled that if the traffic stop investigation is completed the police can no longer detain a citizen unless they can demonstrate they have reasonable suspicion for further detention.
The drug possession and drug delivery charges in this case are very serious and can carry lengthy prison sentences. Because of the amount of drugs and the way they were packaged law enforcement believes the defendant is a major drug supplier. The Dallas District Attorney’s Office will be taking an aggressive approach in this case and will probably seek a lengthy prison sentence. The case will be assigned to the Organized Crime Section which prosecutes in major cases involving suspected drug dealers.
There are legal defenses for this type of criminal charge. An experienced Dallas drug attorney will be able to review the facts and determine if there are legal grounds to fight traffic stop and the search of the vehicle. It will be interesting to see if the facts developed in this case fall with in recent court cases which have ruled that the detention and search violated the 4th Amendment of the Constitution.