Tallahassee Marijuana Offenses Attorney
Although many states have moved towards decriminalization of marijuana, in Florida it remains an illegal controlled substance except in very narrow medicinal cases. To put it bluntly, any possession or distribution of marijuana for “recreational” purposes is a criminal offense in Florida. And while a small amount of marijuana is unlikely to get you in serious legal trouble, you may still face arrest and misdemeanor prosecution for having a joint on you.
At Luke Newman, P.A., we represent individuals charged with marijuana and other drug-related offenses. We understand that even a misdemeanor conviction can have a serious impact on your life. And in more serious cases, we can fight to keep you out of jail on felony charges.
So what are the penalties for marijuana possession? If you are a first-time offender caught with less than 20 grams of marijuana “for personal use,” the maximum charge you face is a first-degree misdemeanor. This does carry the potential for up to 1 year in jail as well as a $1,000 fine. Possession of any amount over 20 grams, however, gets you into felony territory. Specifically, a third-degree felony. Here, a conviction can mean up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.
Where you are arrested for Tallahassee marijuana possession can also play a role in how your case is handled. Specifically, if you are arrested within 1,000 feet of a designated “drug free area,” such as a school or daycare center, the possession with intent to sell can be charged as a second-degree felony. The minimum sentence for such an offense is 15 years and a fine of up to $10,000. Similarly, if you are an adult caught selling any amount of marijuana to a minor–a person under the age of 18–you can also be charged with a second-degree felony.
Do Florida’s Medical Marijuana Laws Protect Me?
You may have heard that medical marijuana is now legal in Florida. That is true, although it carries a number of caveats. In 2016, Florida voters approved a state constitutional amendment that authorized certain individuals to possess up to 2.5 ounces of “medical cannabis” at a time. Basically, a person with a qualifying medical condition such as cancer, epilepsy, or glaucoma, can apply for a special identification card that allows them to purchase marijuana from a state-approved dispensary. This does not mean patients can grow or acquire marijuana on their own from other sources. So for instance, if you grow a marijuana plant in your backyard and give it to an elderly relative to treat their glaucoma, you can still be charged with a crime even if they have a proper identification card.
Contact Tallahassee Drug Crimes Attorney Luke Newman Today
Many people with no prior criminal records find their first encounter with the legal system is due to a marijuana-related arrest. If you find yourself in this position and need representation from a skilled Tallahassee marijuana offenses lawyer, contact Luke Newman, P.A., today to schedule a consultation.