My guess is that it depends on the prosecutor’s temperament, but it’s perfectly possible that you’ll both get charged with possession.
In order to convict you of possession, the state has to prove that:
1. You possessed a substance.
2. The substance was a controlled substance.
3. You knew you had the substance.
Whether the drugs actually *belonged* to someone else is immaterial. The state will point out that you had control of the backpack. Someone else claiming that the drugs were theirs may or may not get them charged with possession but it isn’t certain to get the charges against you dismissed or even mitigated.
The title and body of the question raise some questions for me (I’m not sure whether you’re saying someone is willing to claim that the drugs were theirs or that the entire backpack was theirs) but your best bet is to sit down and have a confidential discussion with a licensed attorney about what actually transpired and what your options are. An attorney will be able to go through all the details of your case with you and evaluate whether there was anything wrong with the stop/search that could support a motion to suppress the evidence, whether there’s anything wrong with the state’s evidence, and whether the state has sufficient evidence to support a conviction.
This blog post is for informational purposes only and should not be relied on as legal advice. This post was about possession charges in Iowa. Consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.