Possession of a controlled substance in Texas is a big deal, and one that can result in serious fines and years in prison, as well as a permanent mark on one’s criminal record. At the office of Tad Nelson, our Texas drug crimes lawyer provides focused defense for clients facing drug charges. Here’s an overview of what you should know about Texas’s laws around marijuana possession.
Possession of Marijuana in Texas
Under the current law in Texas, possession of up to two ounces of marijuana is a Class B misdemeanor and is punishable by a fine of up to $2,000 and 180 days in jail. Possession of between two and four ounces increases the penalty to up to one year in jail and a fine of $4,000, but the crime is still a misdemeanor.
Possessing more than four ounces of marijuana is a felony offense in our state. There is a mandatory minimum sentencing requirement in place of two years, which means that the judge is obligated, under the law, to sentence a defendant convicted of possession to incarceration for at least two years; however, they could face a sentence of up to 10 years for up to 50 pounds of marijuana, or up to 20 years for possession of between 50 and 2,000 pounds.
The Texas legislature attempted to lower the penalties for marijuana possession during the 2021 legislative session. HB 441, which did pass the Texas House 88-44 in April 2021, would have lowered the penalties for possession of less than an ounce of marijuana, making the crime a Class C (instead of a Class B) misdemeanor. The bill would have also provided Texans charged with marijuana possession an option for expunging the charge from their criminal records.
Defenses to Marijuana Possession
While many states have decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana, in Texas, you can still be arrested, charged, and even incarcerated and fined for possession. If you have been arrested and are facing charges, the first thing that you should do is call a criminal defense attorney with experience in drug crimes defense. At the office of Tad Nelson, our lawyer will work hard to build your defense. Possible defenses include:
- Evidence against you was unlawfully obtained (i.e. illegal search and seizure);
- The marijuana was not yours;
- You were lawfully in possession of the marijuana under Texas’s compassionate use program (CUP); or
- The marijuana was placed on your person/in your possession.
Our lawyer will work with you to develop a defense that works.
Call Our Houston, Galveston, and League City Drug Crimes Lawyer Today
If you are facing drug crimes in Texas, you need a skilled criminal defense attorney. Our drug crimes lawyer represents clients in Houston, Galveston, and League City, Texas, as well as the surrounding areas. Please call us directly today to learn more about your rights after being charged with a marijuana drug crime and how our law firm can help.