A Clayton mother who was a victim of violence in her apartment earlier this month now faces various drug charges. Authorities say that the 27-year-old woman was shot when a man came to her apartment door and asked to see someone. The woman told the visitor that the person he sought was not there and the visitor allegedly shot the woman as she closed the door.
Authorities responded to the scene of the shooting and claim to have found cocaine and drug paraphernalia in an area accessible to the mother’s infant. Normally police officers are not entitled to randomly search a crime victim’s home without a warrant, but officers claim that the cocaine was in an open area that they happened upon while responding to the mother’s shooting.
The mother was charged with cocaine possession and child abuse. It is unclear what she will have to do to regain custody of her child.
The man who allegedly shot the mother was arrested in Durham shortly after the incident and was charged with assault with a deadly weapon, inflicting serious injury.
A 25-year-old man who was present in the mother’s apartment at the time of the shooting also faces drug possession charges. It is possible to face drug possession charges despite not actually being caught holding drugs. Under a “constructive possession” theory of prosecution, authorities only have to show that an individual was aware of the presence of drugs and had access to the drugs at the time of an arrest.
Source: News-Observer, “Clayton woman who was shot faces drug, child abuse charges,” Ron Gallagher, Mar. 9, 2012