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drug possession penalties Tag

JBABB Criminal Defense Attorneys > Posts tagged "drug possession penalties"

Drug Possession Penalties: Does the Substance Matter?

Drug Possession Penalties: Does the Substance Matter?

Penalties for a drug possession conviction in Texas are—across the board—more severe than in other states. No matter the substance, you could potentially face steep fines, jail or prison time, a license suspension and even mandatory substance abuse treatment. And the greater the quantity, the greater the penalties.

 

While possession of a controlled substance is a single type of offense in Texas, it does not fall under a single statute under the Texas Health and Safety Code. Rather, the type of substance you were allegedly in possession of will determine—in part—the specific penalties you face. The quantity you possessed is the other primary determining factor.

 

Texas law identifies “penalty groups” of drugs. As the name would suggest, penalty groups influence the penalties for charges involving those drugs. The more serious the drug, the higher the penalties. To illustrate the difference in penalties for possession of a controlled substance, we’ve provided a few examples below.

 

Marijuana

 

You can be charged with a Class B misdemeanor if you possess less than two ounces of marijuana. The penalties include up to 180 days in a county jail, a fine of up to $2,000 or both, a six-month license suspension and probation. These are the minimum penalties for possession of a controlled substance. Possession of marijuana is treated somewhat less severely than possession of other controlled substances. Texans face harsh consequences if convicted, but possession of small amounts of marijuana is sometimes considered a “discretionary” arrest, meaning the officer can choose to cite the offender instead of putting him or her under arrest.

 

Prescription Drugs With Stimulant or Depressant Effects

 

Prescription drugs with the potential for abuse, such as Ritalin and Valium, lie in penalty group three. Possession of fewer than 28 grams of a penalty group three drug is punishable by one year in jail and the potential of a fine up to $4,000.

 

Cocaine

 

Possession of cocaine is a more serious charge, as it lies in penalty group one. Possession of less than one gram can be charged as a state jail felony. You can face up to two years in a state jail and a fine of up to $10,000, but first-time offenders may receive probation in lieu of incarceration.

 

 

Substance and Amount: What Matters

 

Depending on the drug you allegedly had in your possession, you could face misdemeanor or felony charges. But no matter the substance you are accused of being in possession of, you need to work closely with a seasoned Dallas-Fort Worth drug crime defense attorney when facing charges.

 

Due to the potentially severe consequences, it’s vital you involve an attorney early on in your case to ensure your rights are defended and you have the best chance at clearing your name. The laws on drug possession include a very specific definition of “possession” that the attorney for the state may or may not be able to prove in your case. Speak with an attorney before you make any decisions in your case to ensure you have the best defense possible.

 

If you are facing charges for possession of a controlled substance in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys is here to help. JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys will advise you on how to defend your rights. With law offices in Dallas and Denton, our attorneys provide compassionate legal services to Dallas, Collin, Denton, Ellis, Rockwall and Tarrant counties. Our experienced attorneys handle a wide variety of criminal cases including DWI/DUI, assault/family violence, and other misdemeanors and felonies. Call (214) 329-9433, email team@jbabblaw.com, or fill out our confidential online form to schedule a consultation with a Dallas-Fort Worth criminal defense attorney.

 

Facing Drug Possession Penalties in Texas? Follow These First Steps

Facing Drug Possession Penalties in Texas? Follow These First Steps

Drug possession penalties in Texas are severe. One misstep can leave you facing years of incarceration and insurmountable fines. Factors such as the type of drug and the quantity you possessed can mean the difference between a few years behind bars or life. Thus, if you are facing drug possession charges of any kind in Texas, here are some essential first steps you should take.

Connect With an Attorney

No one facing charges for possession of a controlled substance in Texas should do so without a criminal defense attorney. The potential consequences are too great. You should work with a legal professional to formulate the strategies you may need to employ to fight your charges or minimize the burden of the outcome of your case.

Analyze Evidence

It’s important to keep in mind that in drug possession cases, evidence can play a significant role. But evidence is sometimes fleeting and thus needs to be preserved. It can be seized by law enforcement, destroyed or disappear. Likewise, witness testimony can be of immense help but only if you contact and question witnesses soon after the incident in question. It’s best to bring a skilled Dallas-Fort Worth drug possession defense attorney on board to help you manage your case and obtain crucial pieces of evidence for a strong defense.

Abstain from Drugs and Alcohol

Pending the resolution of your case, it’s important to remain sober. Even one small mistake made when facing charges for another offense can ruin any hope of a positive outcome. Likewise, if you are convicted or placed on deferred adjudication with community supervision (i.e. probation), you will most likely be required to take and pass periodic drug tests. You may or may not be given notice before you have to take these. And lastly, staying committed to sobriety—even while your case is still pending—can demonstrate to the court that you have realized the consequences of your actions. This realization, if genuine, could potentially work in your favor. In fact, some prosecutors will agree to dismiss a case if you can pass a drug test on the day of court. There is no guarantee that this offer will be made to you, but you need to be ready if it does. There are even some judges that will test you on the date of a plea to see if you can pass a drug test; obviously not being able to do so does not help your case. Bottom line: no drugs or alcohol while the case is pending!

Drug Possession Penalties in Texas Can Be Life-Altering

Facing drug possession charges is frightening considering what is at stake. The good news is you do not have to face them alone. A skilled drug possession defense attorney in the Dallas-Fort Worth area can work to minimize the burden of your case outcome. Hiring an attorney is a personal choice and one you should make when informed. At the very least, discuss the drug possession penalties in Texas with an attorney before you make any decisions in your case.

If you are facing charges for possession of a controlled substance in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys is here to help. JBabb – Criminal Defense Attorneys will advise you on the best course of action given your circumstances. With law offices in Dallas and Denton, our attorneys provide compassionate legal services to Dallas, Collin, Denton, Ellis, Rockwall and Tarrant counties. Our experienced attorneys handle a wide variety of criminal cases including DWI/DUI, assault/family violence, and other misdemeanors and felonies. Call (214) 329-9433, email team@jbabblaw.com, or fill out our confidential online form to schedule a consultation with a Dallas-Fort Worth criminal defense attorney.