Drug Possession Boldly Defending Your Best Interests

Austin Drug Possession Lawyers

Fighting Charges of Possessing a Controlled Substance

You could be charged with drug possession in Austin, TX, if you are alleged to have unlawfully had in your actual care, custody, control, or management a controlled substance. In these cases, the State must prove that you had the substance knowingly or intentionally and, if it were a prescription medication, that you did not have a valid prescription for it. Drug possession charges in Texas are serious. Depending on the amount and type of substance you allegedly had, you could be accused of a felony or misdemeanor. In either case, the penalties are severe, consisting of incarceration, fines, and/or other sanctions.

At Smith & Vinson Law Firm, we are ready to get started on fighting your charge. Our Austin drug possession attorneys know that more sides to the story exist than just the prosecutor's. We want to hear yours and uncover the facts of the matter. Employing an innovative and personalized approach, we can develop an individualized and aggressive defense strategy on your behalf. Our talented team has a range of experience, with Attorney Jarrod Smith having served as a former prosecutor. We will leverage our knowledge and skills to protect your rights and can seek to help avoid incarceration or other severe penalties.

For powerful legal representation in your possession case, please call the Austin drug possession lawyers from Smith & Vinson Law Firm at (512) 359-3743 or submit an online contact form today.

Texas's Drug Penalty Groups

Before going into a specific discussion about drug possession charges in Austin, it's beneficial to review Texas's drug Penalty Groups. The level of charges and penalties you can face are tied to the category the drug you allegedly had falls into.

Texas classifies controlled substances into four groups, with the first two further separated into subgroups, for a total of seven. The categories are distinguished by the type of drugs contained within them.

Listed from most to least severe, Texas's Penalty Groups are as follows:

  • Penalty Group 1: This category contains certain opiates and opium derivatives.
  • Penalty Group 1-A: This category contains lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD).
  • Penalty Group 1-B: This category contains fentanyl, alpha-methylfentanyl, and other fentanyl derivatives.
  • Penalty Group 2: This category contains hallucinogenic substances.
  • Penalty Group 2-A: This category contains drugs with certain components.
  • Penalty Group 3: This category contains substances with a potential for abuse and a stimulant or depressant effect on the central nervous system. The group also includes substances with limited quantities of narcotics.
  • Penalty Group 4: This category contains substances with limited quantities of narcotics and active medicinal ingredients that include one or more non-narcotics.

Is Drug Possession a Felony in Texas?

Drug possession can be either a felony or a misdemeanor. The level is determined by the Penalty Group the substance is in and the amount of the drug.

Below is the level of charges for the different Penalty Groups:

  • Possession of a Penalty Group 1 or 1-B substance:
    • State jail felony: Less than 1 gram
    • Third-degree felony: 1 gram or more but less than 4 grams
    • Second-degree felony: 4 grams or more but less than 200 grams
    • First-degree felony: 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams
  • Possession of a Penalty Group 1-A substance:
    • State jail felony: Less than 20 abuse units
    • Third-degree felony: 20 abuse units or more but less than 80
    • Second-degree felony: 80 units or more but less than 4,000
    • First-degree felony: 4,000 abuse units or more but less than 8,000
  • Possession of a Penalty Group 2 substance:
    • State jail felony: Less than 1 gram
    • Third-degree felony: 1 gram or more but less than 4 grams
    • Second-degree felony: 4 grams or more but less than 400 grams
  • Possession of a Penalty Group 2-A substance:
    • Class B misdemeanor: 2 ounces or less
    • Class A misdemeanor: 4 ounces or less but more than 2 ounces
    • State jail felony: 5 pounds or less but more than 4 ounces
    • Third-degree felony: 50 pounds or less but more than 5 pounds
    • Second-degree felony: 2,000 pounds or less but more than 50 pounds
  • Possession of a Penalty Group 3 substance:
    • Class A misdemeanor: Less than 28 grams
    • Third-degree felony: 28 grams or more but less than 200 grams
    • Second-degree felony: 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams
  • Possession of a Penalty Group 4 substance:
    • Class B misdemeanor: Less than 28 grams
    • Third-degree felony: 28 grams or more but less than 200 grams
    • Second-degree felony: 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams
  • Possession of marijuana:
    • Class B misdemeanor: 2 ounces or less
    • Class A misdemeanor: 4 ounces or less but more than 2 ounces
    • State jail felony: 5 pounds or less but more than 4 ounces
    • Third-degree felony: 50 pounds or less but more than 5 pounds
    • Second-degree felony: 2,000 pounds or less but more than 50 pounds

Whether you’ve been charged with a misdemeanor or felony, our Austin drug possession lawyers are prepared to stand up for you. We’ll relentlessly fight on your behalf both in and out of court.

What Are the Penalties for Drug Possession in Texas?

How much jail or prison time a person can get for possessing controlled substances depends on the facts of their case. Each level of offense has its own minimum and maximum terms of incarceration. Upon a conviction, a judge can set the sentence up to the maximum or can go lower if circumstances warrant such a decision.

The potential penalties for drug possession in Texas are as follows:

  • Class B misdemeanor:
    • Up to 180 days in jail and/or
    • Up to $2,000 in fines
  • Class A misdemeanor:
    • Up to 1 year in jail and/or
    • Up to $4,000 in fines
  • State jail felony:
    • 180 days to 2 years in state jail and/or
    • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • Third-degree felony:
    • 2 to 10 years in prison and/or
    • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • Second-degree felony:
    • 2 to 20 years in prison and/or
    • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • First-degree felony:
    • 5 to 99 years in prison and/or
    • Up to $10,000 in fines

In drug possession cases involving a substantial amount of a controlled substance, the maximum penalty can be life imprisonment. For instance, possessing 400 grams or more of a Penalty Group 1 or 1-B substance can be penalized by life or 10 to 99 years in prison.

At Smith & Vinson Law Firm, we recognize the effects an Austin drug possession charge can have on your life. That is why we will work hard to seek the best result for you.

Can I Fight My Drug Possession Charge?

You most certainly can fight a drug possession charge. In fact, it is your Constitutional right to do so. Attacking the accusations requires building an aggressive and compelling defense to cast doubt on the prosecutor’s arguments. Our team is here to help do that.

Various defenses can be raised to fight drug possession charges depending on the situation. For instance, we can argue that our client was subject to an unlawful arrest or search or not aware that the substance was a drug.

From the moment you retain our services, we’ll take a deep dive into the facts of your case and will be determined to fight for you.

Speak with One of Our Austin Drug Possession Attorneys

If you’ve been accused of drug possession in Austin, we’ve got your back. In and out of the courtroom, we’ll aggressively defend you.

To schedule a free consultation with our Austin drug possession lawyers, contact us at (512) 359-3743.

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