As various states across the nation have eased up on marijuana laws, making it legal in some states, residents in Texas and other states question how serious crimes involving this substance will remain. While neighboring states have permitted the use of medical marijuana, decriminalized petty offenses involving the substance and have even legalized some recreational usage of it, Texas still takes a strong stance against the usage and sale of this drug. This means that residents and visitors in the state could face serious criminal charges if found in possession of marijuana.
In Texas, possession of marijuana could result in charges ranging from a Class B misdemeanor to a second-degree felony charge. This is dependent on the quantity of the substance. Penalties could range from 6 months in jail to life in prison. Additionally, fines could range from as much as $2,000 for a Class B misdemeanor to $50,000 for a felony charge.
It should be noted that the penalties associated with the possession of marijuana concentrates, such as hash oil, are even more serious. This is charged as a felony and could result in up to two years in prison.
The sale of marijuana could range from a Class B misdemeanor to a first-degree felony. Penalties could range from 6 months in jail to life in prison, and fine could range from $2,000 to $100,000. If one is accused of selling to a minor an amount .25 oz or more, this is charged as a second-degree felony. Furthermore, if one is accused of selling in a drug-free zone, penalties are doubled.
Because the penalties associated with marijuana possession and sale are serious in the state of Texas, it is important to consider your defense options. In some courts within the state, drug diversion programs are available. These allow for certain first-time offenders to complete a rehabilitative program in lieu of serving a prison sentence.
Facing drug charges can be a difficult matter to absorb. Many would never consider being in such a situation, making it a foreign experience for them. Navigating a criminal defense can be challenging. The accused may not fully understand what options are available to them, and this is where a legal professional could be of assistance.