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When does drug possession become a felony?

On Behalf of | Jul 19, 2022 | Criminal Defense |

There are several different types of drug-related crimes. In addition to consuming controlled substances, possessing paraphernalia and holding the substances themselves can lead to significant legal trouble.

The challenge with possession as a crime is that it can be difficult for law enforcement to determine what you intend to do with the substance. More significant amounts tend to suggest that you were going to distribute a controlled substance to other people.

Here’s what you should know about possessing controlled substances in Missouri and when it becomes a felony.

Marijuana is a little different

Over the last several years, many states have relaxed their laws regarding marijuana, some allowing only medicinal use and others allowing recreational use. Missouri has not joined this trend.

While marijuana is still illegal in Missouri, possessing smaller amounts may fall under the misdemeanor category. However, if you are caught carrying 35 grams or more of marijuana, it could be charged as a class D felony.

Other substances

Missouri takes possession of controlled substances seriously. Although smaller amounts of marijuana may be considered a misdemeanor, possessing any other controlled substance is a felony that can lead to between three and ten years of jail time.

In addition to possession, other felony-level drug crimes may include:

  • Distribution or sale in a protected location (such as a school or park)
  • Delivery of drug paraphernalia
  • Manufacturing a controlled substance
  • Trafficking

These felonies can lead to several years of jail time, which increases for repeat offenders.

Drug charges can have a severe impact on your life and future plans. Often, the charges and the process that comes after a criminal drug charge can be confusing. It is essential to talk to a skilled professional about any drug charges you may be facing.

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