Like many states, Texas takes a hard stance on drug crimes. Penalties for possessing a controlled substance can be severe, leading to costly fines, jail time, and other restrictions on your freedom and your future. These penalties can vary substantially, depending on the type and quantity of the substance involved in the alleged offense. Here’s what you need to know about possession of controlled substance penalties in Houston.
The Penalty Groups Under Texas Law
Under the Texas Controlled Substances Act, controlled substances are divided into four categories, known as Penalty Groups. Penalty Group 1 includes the most highly regulated drugs often considered the most dangerous and addictive, such as heroin, cocaine, LSD, ketamine, methamphetamine, and opioids. Penalty Group 2 includes ecstasy (MDMA), PCP, psychedelic mushrooms, amphetamines, and more. Controlled substances with depressive or stimulant effects, such as valium, Ritalin, anabolic steroids, and benzodiazepines, fall under Penalty Group 3. Penalty Group 4 includes a wide range of prescription medications, like opioid derivatives. Finally, marijuana is treated separately from these Penalty Groups.
Consequences of a Possession Conviction
Depending on the Penalty Group and amount of the controlled substance, you could face a range of penalties if convicted of possession. For instance, a smaller amount (less than 28 grams) of a Penalty Group 4 substance could be charged as a Class B misdemeanor, carrying up to six months in jail and up to $2,000 in fines. In contrast, prosecutors could charge you with a 3rd-degree felony for possessing between one to four grams of a Penalty Group 1 substance, resulting in a 2 to 10-year prison sentence and up to $10,000 in fines. Even though other states have taken steps to decriminalize or even legalize marijuana, you can still face criminal penalties for marijuana possession in Texas.
Defend Your Rights and Your Freedom Today
Facing criminal charges of any kind can be overwhelming, especially if you have no previous experience with the criminal justice system. Contact a trusted criminal defense lawyer to discuss your situation as soon as you’ve been arrested for possession in Pearland or Houston. Together, you and your attorney will fight hard to defend your rights and keep your future as bright as possible.
Call the Law Offices of Keith G. Allen, PLLC, today at (832) 230-0075 to schedule a free consultation with a dedicated Pearland criminal defense attorney.