Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian

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Collin County Marijuana Possession Attorneys

Were you arrested and charged with marijuana possession in Collin County? If so, don’t hesitate to contact the Collin County marijuana possession lawyers of Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian. We have extensive experience representing individuals who have been charged with marijuana-related crimes, and we will work hard to defend you against the charges you face. While most possession charges will be Class B misdemeanors, the authorities may seek to charge alleged offenders with a felony (depending on the circumstances), or might seek additional charges for paraphernalia, or more seriously, delivery of marijuana.

Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.002(26) defines marijuana as the plant Cannabis sativa L., regardless of whether it is growing, the seeds of that plant, and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of that plant or its seeds. Marijuana is known by other street names including pot, weed, bud, hydro, reefer, chronic, or ganja. Possession of marijuana is a criminal offense in Texas that may be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the amount of marijuana that was allegedly possessed.

If you were arrested for an alleged marijuana possession crime anywhere in the greater Collin County area, you are going to want to seek legal representation for help defending against the criminal charges. Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian is the only firm in Collin County with two Criminal Law Board Certified partners.

Our goal is to get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. We can review your case as soon as you call (972) 369-0577 or contact us online to schedule a confidential consultation.

Do I Need A Marijuana Possession Lawyer?

Depending on the amount of marijuana that you are accused of possessing and other factors, you could be facing either a misdemeanor or felony charges. It will be crucial to hire an attorney with specific experience representing people charged with possession. Your lawyer will help you understand the charges you face, will evaluate your case and the evidence against you, and will advise you of your rights and legal options. They will work to get the best possible outcome, which means the result with the least impact on your freedom and your finances.

There are many reasons why hiring an attorney is essential when you’ve been arrested for drug possession, such as:

We know drug laws. We’re intimately familiar with the drug possession laws in Texas, and we have experience defending clients against marijuana charges of all kinds. Knowledge of these laws is vital to mounting a successful defense in court. Also, several of our practicing attorneys are former prosecutors, so we fully understand what needs to be done to prove innocence for a marijuana possession charge.

We know search and seizure laws. Unlawful search and seizure can often be the deciding factor in a marijuana arrest. Constitutional search and seizure laws are strict and exacting, and require law enforcement officers to follow a precise set of guidelines when searching a private citizen’s home or vehicle. If these laws are not followed to the letter and your constitutional rights are violated, we can use this for your defense.

We cost less than fines. Representing yourself in court for a marijuana possession charge can be costly, and not just in terms of court fees. Although you may think hiring a defense attorney is expensive, being arrested and convicted of possessing even a small amount of marijuana can mean jail time and several thousand dollars in fines. In many cases, hiring a defense attorney is the cheaper option in the long run.

We do the work. A defense attorney does more than stand next to you in court. Defending yourself against marijuana possession charges takes time and preparation. When you hire a qualified defense attorney, we will take on the work of investigating your arrest, gathering evidence, and building a strong defense so you can get back to your life.

We provide support. Being arrested for marijuana possession can be a frightening experience, full of uncertainty and doubt, especially if you’ve never been through it before. Law enforcement officers may treat you like you’re already guilty. You may worry about keeping your job or how you’re going to pay the fines. A competent defense attorney doesn’t just defend you in court. We provide support when you need it most. We are an advocate, someone you can depend on to provide compassionate counsel and advice as well as emotional support. We know how scary this can be, and we can help you get through it.

Prosecutors are rarely willing to plea bargain with an alleged offender who does not have legal counsel, so you are going to want to have an attorney who may be able to negotiate a reduction or dismissal of your criminal charges. The skilled and experienced criminal defense attorneys at Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian have successfully helped clients just like you facing these types of charges, and we’re ready to get to work on your case. Don’t hesitate to call us now and schedule a confidential consultation to discuss how we can help you.

 

If you have been charged with possession, seek the legal counsel of a determined attorney who will advocate for you Contact Us

Why Choose Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian To Handle My Case?

Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian is the largest criminal defense firm in Collin County. Because of our size, clients enjoy the benefit of multiple attorneys collaborating together on their case.

Founding Partner Jeremy Rosenthal is Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Roughly 1 percent of attorneys are Board Certified.

Mr. Rosenthal is a former Assistant District Attorney in Collin County and the former Chief Prosecutor for County Court at Law Two. He has almost two decades of legal experience and is a Board Member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association. He is also a member of the National College of DUI Defense and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

Types of Marijuana Possession Cases We Handle

The Texas Controlled Substance Act § 481.121 establishes that a person commits the crime of possession of marihuana when they knowingly or intentionally possess any usable quantity of marijuana. Offenses are classified based on the amount allegedly possessed, so the crimes are classified as follows:

  • Two ounces or less — Class B misdemeanor punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,000.
  • Four ounces or less but more than 2 ounces — Class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $4,000.
  • Five pounds or less but more than 4 ounces — State jail felony punishable by a minimum of 180 days up to two years in state jail and a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Fifty pounds or less but more than 5 pounds — Third-degree felony punishable by a minimum of two years up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Two thousand pounds or less but more than 50 pounds — Second-degree felony punishable by a minimum of two years up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
  • More than 2,000 pounds — First-degree felony punishable by imprisonment in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for life or a minimum of five years up to 99 years and a fine of up to $50,000.

Marijuana possession crimes involving more significant amounts can lead to prosecutors alleging an intent to sell, which can complicate criminal charges and include enhanced penalties.

There are also several aggravating and mitigating factors that can increase or decrease the penalties for marijuana possession. These depend on the circumstances of the possession and arrest and are unique to each case.

Aggravating factors are defined in Texas Rules of Disciplinary Procedure as “any considerations or factors that may justify an increase in the degree of discipline to be imposed.” There are many factors to consider, such as:

  • Are you a repeat offender
  • Did you take a leadership role in the crime
  • Was the possession in a drug-free zone, such as a school
  • Was the possession in the presence of a minor

There are also numerous mitigating factors or factors that may decrease the penalties imposed for possession. These factors include:

  • You have no prior record
  • You showed cooperative conduct
  • You made a good faith effort to rectify the issue
Charged with a Marijuana Crime In Collin County? Contact Us

Steps to Take After a Marijuana Possession Arrest

An arrest for marijuana possession can be terrifying, but there are steps you can take to protect your rights and not incriminate yourself. Traffic stops are very often the setting for these types of arrests, so one of the best pieces of advice we can give is don’t travel with marijuana on your person or in your car. It is a controlled substance, and though some law enforcement officers may be more lenient than others when they find you carrying marijuana, they are the exception to the rule. If you’re caught with marijuana in Texas, you’re likely going to be arrested.

Here are some steps to take if you’ve just been arrested for marijuana possession:

  1. Stay calm. This is the number one rule when under arrest. Law enforcement officers are not out to ruin your life. They have a job to do just like everyone else. Let them do their work, keep cool, and know that you’ll have your day in court to state your case. Don’t try to explain away the possession, don’t get upset, and don’t resist. Take a deep breath and know that you only risk making the charges against you worse if you get angry about the situation.
  2. Keep quiet. You have the right to stay silent and not answer any questions, and you should exercise it. Don’t try to explain or speak to the arresting officers. They may act like this is business as usual and try to be personable, but anything you say, even in passing conversation, can be used against you in court. Even if you’re sure they can’t hear you, keep quiet and don’t speak to anyone until you’ve talked to a criminal defense attorney.
  3. Record or remember. Record or remember the arrest. You have a First Amendment right to record the police exercising their duties in public, but if you’re not able to record them, try to recall the details of the arrest and write them down as soon as possible. This information can be invaluable when building your defense, as many defense strategies for marijuana possession charges hinge on the constitutionality of the search and seizure performed during the arrest.
  4. Keep track of dates, times, and places. Make sure and listen to all the information you’re given by the arresting officers. You’ll have an initial hearing or arraignment to attend soon after an arrest, and you’ll need to remember when and where this will take place. You’ll also be given other pertinent dates and information regarding when you need to be in court. If possible, write all these details down so you can go over them later with your attorney.
  5. Get representation. Assert your right to an attorney. You have the right to have a lawyer present before you answer any questions, and you should exercise that right to protect yourself.Steps to Take After a Marijuana Possession ArrestAn arrest for marijuana possession can be terrifying, but there are steps you can take to protect your rights and not incriminate yourself. Traffic stops are very often the setting for these types of arrests, so one of the best pieces of advice we can give is don’t travel with marijuana on your person or in your car. It is a controlled substance, and though some law enforcement officers may be more lenient than others when they find you carrying marijuana, they are the exception to the rule. If you’re caught with marijuana in Texas, you’re likely going to be arrested.Here are some steps to take if you’ve just been arrested for marijuana possession:
    1. Stay calm. This is the number one rule when under arrest. Law enforcement officers are not out to ruin your life. They have a job to do just like everyone else. Let them do their work, keep cool, and know that you’ll have your day in court to state your case. Don’t try to explain away the possession, don’t get upset, and don’t resist. Take a deep breath and know that you only risk making the charges against you worse if you get angry about the situation.
    2. Keep quiet. You have the right to stay silent and not answer any questions, and you should exercise it. Don’t try to explain or speak to the arresting officers. They may act like this is business as usual and try to be personable, but anything you say, even in passing conversation, can be used against you in court. Even if you’re sure they can’t hear you, keep quiet and don’t speak to anyone until you’ve talked to a criminal defense attorney.
    3. Record or remember. Record or remember the arrest. You have a First Amendment right to record the police exercising their duties in public, but if you’re not able to record them, try to recall the details of the arrest and write them down as soon as possible. This information can be invaluable when building your defense, as many defense strategies for marijuana possession charges hinge on the constitutionality of the search and seizure performed during the arrest.
    4. Keep track of dates, times, and places. Make sure and listen to all the information you’re given by the arresting officers. You’ll have an initial hearing or arraignment to attend soon after an arrest, and you’ll need to remember when and where this will take place. You’ll also be given other pertinent dates and information regarding when you need to be in court. If possible, write all these details down so you can go over them later with your attorney.
    5. Get representation. Assert your right to an attorney. You have the right to have a lawyer present before you answer any questions, and you should exercise that right to protect yourself.

What are the laws and penalties regarding marijuana possession?

Here’s a Quick Guide:

Weight
Classification
Penalty
2 ounces or less Class B misdemeanor Not more than 180 days in a county jail and/or a fine of not more than $2,000
More than 2 ounces, but less than 4 ounces Class A misdemeanor Not more than 1 year in a county jail and/or a fine of not more than $4,000
More than 4 ounces, but less than 5 pounds State jail felony 180 days to 2 years in a state jail and/or a fine of not more than $10,000
More than 5 pounds, but less than 50 pounds Third-degree felony 2 to 10 years in a state prison and/or a fine of not more than $10,000
More than 50 pounds, but less than 2,000 Second-degree felony 2 to 20 years in a state prison and/or a fine of not more than $10,000
More than 2,000 pounds Enhanced first-degree felony 5 to 99 years and a fine of not more than $50,000

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Marijuana

What is the difference between actual possession and constructive possession of marijuana?

Texas Penal Code § 1.07(39) defines possession as “actual care, custody, control, or management.” Possession is frequently referred to as being actual possession or constructive possession. Actual possession involves marijuana being on an individual’s person, whether it is in their pockets, hands, or a purse or backpack. Constructive possession requires marijuana being found in a location over which an alleged offender had dominion and control. An actual possession charge is typically much easier for a prosecutor to prove, as an alleged offender could be able to challenge a constructive possession when they believe that they did not have adequate control over the location in which the marijuana was found.

What are some common defenses against marijuana possession charges?

One of the most common defenses to marijuana possession charges concerns illegal search and seizure by law enforcement officers. When police seize marijuana in particular circumstances without a warrant or probable cause, it may be possible that the evidence will be inadmissible and the criminal charges thrown out. In many constructive possession cases, an alleged offender could argue the marijuana belonged to another person. Some people in Texas may have medical marijuana that was legally purchased in another state, and the suspected marijuana in some cases may not have been cannabis. It is also possible for a minimal number of instances to involve entrapment or planted drugs.

Will a marijuana possession conviction affect the status of my driver’s license?

Yes. The Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS) will suspend the license of any driver who is convicted of any drug or controlled substance offense for 180 days. You will also be required to complete a 15-hour class in an authorized Drug Education Program. To get your driver’s license reinstated, you will have to pay a reinstatement fee, obtain a Financial Responsibility Insurance Certificate (SR-22) from an authorized insurance company (which must be maintained for two years from the date of conviction), and submit the certificate of completion for the required Drug Education Program.

Marijuana Possession Statistics

TxDPS reported that marijuana accounted for 50.4 percent of all drug possession arrests in 2017. Law officers in Texas seized 143,767 pounds, 13 ounces of marijuana in 2017, and 10,798 cannabis plants.

In April 2018, Salon reported that Texas “has long been the statewide leader in marijuana arrests” and 98 percent of the 64,949 cannabis-related arrests in 2016 were for simple possession. According to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), there were 61,233 arrests for marijuana in 2015 (59,658 of which were for possession as opposed to 1,475 for sales) and 67,584 arrests in 2014 (66,060 of which were for possession as opposed to 1,524 for sales).

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) reported that 88 percent of the 8.2 million marijuana arrests between 2001 and 2010 were simply for having marijuana, and African Americans were 3.73 times more likely than whites to be arrested for marijuana. The ACLU also reported that the numbers indicated that a person was arrested for marijuana possession every 37 seconds.

Contact a Collin County Marijuana Possession Attorney Today

Were you arrested for an alleged marijuana possession crime in Collin County? If so, politely refuse to speak to the authorities and instead ask to speak to a lawyer from Rosenthal Kalabus & Therrian. Our team understands the many complications that a marijuana arrest can have on your life, your work, and those you love, and we work to help our clients regain a sense of normalcy in their lives. Call (972) 369-0577 or contact us online to receive a free consultation.