Marijuana Possession

Marijuana consumption has increased dramatically over the past decade. In fact, nearly 25 million Americans reported using the drug in 2016. Marijuana remains illegal in Texas for recreational and medical use. But with the increase in consumption has come the increase in arrests for possession.

In some regions of Texas you will be given a ticket for possession of small amounts of the drugs, but in others, you will be sent to jail. Marijuana possession can be charged as both a misdemeanor and a felony. This means you could spend time behind bars and be required to pay hefty fines.

Texas Marijuana Possession Defense Attorney

Were you arrested for possession of marijuana in North-Central Texas? David Sloane is a sought-after and highly respected attorney with over 20 years of experience defending clients accused of marijuana crimes.

David Sloane understands this may be your first run-in with the Texas Criminal Justice System, which is why he wants to help. Schedule a time to speak with Law Offices of David Sloane, PLLC. Call (817) 810-0088 or submit your information in the online contact form. David Sloane can answer any questions you have and advise you on the best course of action.

Law Offices of David Sloane, PLLC defends those accused of marijuana crimes in counties in North-Central Texas such as Dallas County, Tarrant County, Gray County, Wheeler County and Armstrong County.

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Texas’ Marijuana Laws

Marijuana laws may be more relaxed across the United States, but the drug remains illegal in Texas. According to the Texas Controlled Substance Act, knowingly possessing any amount of marijuana in the state is illegal.

Marijuana is not classified within any of the six penalty groups. Instead, the drug is classified within it’s own group in the Texas Controlled Substance Act. This means possession of marijuana may not be as heavily penalized as possessing other drugs.

To be charged with marijuana possession you must be found in actual or constructive possession of the drug. Actual possession means the drug was found on your actual person. This can include having the drug in your pocket or hands.

Constructive possession, on the other hand, is a bit more complicated. This form of possession does not involve the drug being in your physical possession, but you know where it is and have exclusive control over it. This can include having the marijuana in your glove box or under a seat in your car.

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What are the Penalties for Marijuana Possession in Texas?

Until Texas’ attitude towards marijuana shifts, possession of even the smallest amount of the drug will continue to be heavily penalized. How you are charged for possession will depend on the amount found on your person.

Listed in the table below are the penalties for possession of marijuana in Texas.

WeightChargeJail/Prison TimeFine
2 oz. or lessClass B misdemeanorUp to 180 days$2,000
More than 2 oz. but less than 4 oz.Class A misdemeanorUp to 1 year$4,000
More than 4 oz. but less than 5 lbs.State jail felony180 days – 2 years$10,000
More than 5 lbs. but less than 50 lbs.Third-degree felony2 years -10 years$10,000
More than 50 lbs. but less than 2,000 lbs.Second-degree felony2 years – 20 years$10,000
More than 2,000 lbs.Life-felony5 years – 99 years or life$50,000


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Possession of Edibles and Concentrates

Marijuana edibles and concentrates such as oil and dabs are more harshly penalized than possession of the plant’s buds. THC concentrates and edible are linked in the same group since the foods are infused with the concentrates. Because THC concentrates and edibles produce a more potent high, possession of less than one gram is a felony in Texas.

The Texas Health and Safety Code holds an individual responsible for the total weight of the substance, including marijuana adulterants and dilatants (edibles and concentrates). Listed below are the possible penalties for possession of THC concentrates and edibles.

  • Less than 1 gram: State jail felony punishable by two years in jail and a fine up to $10,000
  • More than 1 gram but less than 4 grams: Third-degree felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000
  • More than 4 grams but less than 400 grams: Second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000
  • More than 400 grams: First-degree felony punishable by five years to 99 years or life in prison and a fine up to $50,000

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Dallas County Marijuana Cite and Release

According to a report from the FBI Uniform Crime Reporting Program, nearly 64,000 people were arrested in 2016 for marijuana possession in Texas. Dallas County realized too many people who were causing no harm to society were filing up the county jail and wasting the resources of the Dallas Police Department.

To combat this issue, Dallas County began citing and releasing residents found in possession of four ounces or less of marijuana. Assuming no other crimes were committed, you won’t spend the night in jail or have your car impounded. Instead, the officer will confiscate the drugs and write you a citation.

You will be required to attend two court dates. As long as you appear in court, you will not be arrested. First-time offenders will be eligible for a diversion program that includes probation, community services and drug classes. When the program is complete, the charges may be eligible for dismissal.

The penalties for possession remain. Just because you were not arrested when police found you in possession does not mean you won’t have to spend time behind bars for the offense.  For those caught with pot outside Dallas County, the old rules still apply. You will be arrested and booked in a local jail.

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Additional Resources for Marijuana Possession

Texas Controlled Substance Act – Follow the link to read through the act governing marijuana possession in Texas. You can find a list of drugs listed in the same penalty group as marijuana and the penalties for possession. You can also learn about other marijuana crimes such as marijuana delivery and delivery to a child.

Dallas County Cite and Release  – Read through a briefing over Dallas County cite and release. You can learn about the goals of the program, how the process works and what happens if you fail to appear.

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Marijuana Possession Defense Lawyer in Texas

Possession of even the smallest amounts of marijuana can land you behind bars. Don’t let this happen to you. Contact Law Offices of David Sloane, PLLC to begin your defense for marijuana possession. David Sloane will listen to your story and formulate a defense plan in your best interest.

Exercise your right to legal counsel and contact Law Offices of David Sloane, PLLC today. Call (817) 810-0088 or submit your information in the contact form to schedule a free consultation. Law Offices of David Sloane, PLLC defends those accused of marijuana crimes in counties across North-Central Texas including Dallas County, Tarrant County, Carson County, Donley County and Childress County.

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This page was last updated on Wednesday, February 6, 2019.