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Possession of Controlled Substance – Sufficiency of Evidence, Possession Element – Presence of Drugs in Body

State v. Patrick R. Patterson, 2009 WI App 161
For Patterson: David R. Karpe


¶25      There is no dispute that testing revealed that Tanya S. had Oxycodone in her system at the relevant time. However, as Patterson argues, the presence of drugs in someone’s system, standing alone, is not sufficient evidence to support a conviction for possession of a controlled substance. SeeState v. Griffin, 220 Wis. 2d 371, 381, 584 N.W.2d 127 (Ct. App. 1998). “Possession” in this context requires evidence that the individual had a substance in his or her control. See id. at 381 (citing Wis JI—Criminal 920). Still, as we explained in Griffin, “‘when combined with other corroborating evidence of sufficient probative value, evidence of [ingestion] can be sufficient to prove possession.’” Griffin, 220 Wis. 2d at 381 (citation omitted). That is the situation here.

Various witnesses saw Patterson give Oxycodone to Tanya S., ¶26.


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