Minor Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession Lawyer in Ohio
It is important to understand Ohio’s weed laws as they differ from other states across America. There can be some confusion about whether weed is legal in Ohio for recreational uses as well as for medical purposes. Although misdemeanor possession of marijuana charges are less harsh than felony charges and/or convictions of controlled substances and other drug-related charges, severe consequences often can follow an arrest, charge and/or conviction of misdemeanor marijuana possession in Ohio. Penalties can include harm to military status, harm to academic financial aid, ineligibility to work in certain professional fields, disciplinary action, and automatic driver’s license suspensions.
Columbus Misdemeanor Possession of Marijuana Lawyer
Contact Brian Joslyn of the Joslyn Law Firm if you have been charged with a misdemeanor marijuana possession offense in Franklin County, Columbus, Ohio. Due to the potentially devastating effects that a marijuana conviction can have on your life, it is imperative that you contact a Columbus misdemeanor possession of marijuana lawyer to defend your case. Call the Joslyn Law Firm at (614) 444-1900 for a free consultation today.
Marijuana Possession in Ohio Information Center
Is Weed Legal in Ohio? – Understanding Ohio’s Marijuana Laws
Many states across America have legalized the recreational use of marijuana in the last few years but Ohio is not one of these. As of July 2023, it is currently illegal to have and use weed/marijuana recreationally in Ohio. That being said the use of medicinal marijuana is allowed as long as a person holds a valid prescription for the drug. This could change later this year (2023) if Ohio House Bill 168, called the Ohio Adult Use Act, is passed into law which would allow for the recreational use of marijuana in Ohio. If it becomes law, adults would be able to have 50 grams of marijuana in their possession, and would also be allowed to grow up to six cannabis plants at home.
Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession Definition
Under Ohio law, the elements of minor misdemeanor marijuana possession include knowledge and/or reasonable belief that the substance is marijuana. Knowledge consists of the specific intent and purpose to possess marijuana. A reasonable belief is formed according to what a person of average intelligence would believe under the circumstances.
Possession can be actual or constructive in Ohio. Actual possession is having direct dominion and control of marijuana. Constructive possession is awareness of the marijuana and/or reasonable belief the individual could actually possess the marijuana.
Ohio Marijuana Possession Laws
Ohio criminalizes the possession of marijuana in any amount. However, the degree of penalties depends on the quantity of marijuana in question.
Ohio controlled substances possession laws are governed by Ohio Rev. Code § 2925.11. These penalties apply to any compound, mixture, preparation or substance containing marijuana other than hashish. Marijuana can include cannabis, pot, ganja, bud, chronic or weed, but does not include any resin derived from the plant or anything created from that resin.
Police officers who make arrests for simple possession of marijuana will often attempt to find additional evidence of intent to sell marijuana. Possession of marijuana with intent to sell carries significantly harsher penalties and repercussions than simple possession
Penalties for Ohio Marijuana Possession
Possession of marijuana in Ohio law is a minor misdemeanor for having less than 100 grams. The penalty for a minor misdemeanor possession of marijuana is a $150 fine. For a first-time offense, the court will not impose a jail sentence.
Possession of 100 grams or more but less than 200 grams is a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. This offense carries a sentence of up to 30 days in jail and/or up to a $250 fine.
Anything more than 200 grams in someone’s possession is a felony marijuana possession offense.
Other Repercussions of Minor Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession in Ohio
A marijuana charge and/or conviction can result in potentially life-altering repercussions, such as the following:
- Lowered opportunities of finding employment or furthering education
- Difficulty obtaining student loans or government subsidized housing
- Possible inability to qualify for food stamps or other government assistance
- Jeopardizing child custody or adoption actions
- For a felony conviction, your right to vote or possess firearms might be affected
Additionally, any person who is convicted may be subjected to driver’s license or commercial driver’s license suspension suspend for six months to five years.
How To Defend Your Misdemeanor Possession of Marijuana Charge
Every individual has the constitutional right to protection from unlawful searches and seizures, which include potentially manufactured evidence by law enforcement officials for the prosecution purposes, lack of a search warrant, and improperly executed search warrants.
In the event that illegal evidence has been used against you, your Columbus misdemeanor possession of marijuana lawyer will likely file a motion to suppress the evidence. If the motion to suppress the evidence is granted and the prosecution has not proven its case, the charges against you may be dismissed.
Also, if you were charged with simple possession of marijuana and the arresting officer did not give you Miranda warnings, anything you say will likely be inadmissible in court.
Other defenses can include mistaken identity, entrapment by law enforcement, and lack of possession.
Ohio Marijuana Law FAQ
Many people who have been charged with a marijuana offense in Ohio have questions about the potential sentences they may face, what certain elements of the charges are, and whether they will have a criminal record, among other questions.
Although searching the internet for answers to your questions about Ohio weed laws is one of the best places to start finding information for the marijuana charges against you, nothing compares to speaking to an actual marijuana defense lawyer.
Q. Is marijuana illegal in Ohio?
A. Yes, marijuana possession and trafficking is illegal in Ohio and the United States. If you are charged with a marijuana offense under Ohio law or federal law, you could receive severe punishments, including denial of the right to vote, driver’s license suspension or revocation, fines and jail or prison sentences.
Q. What penalties could I face for marijuana use, possession, trafficking or sale?
A. Penalties for marijuana charges can vary depending on the degree of the offense and the amount of marijuana. Punishments could include jail or prison time, fines, driver’s license suspension, denial of the right to vote, and/or an inability to possess or purchase a firearm.
Q. Under Ohio law, what are the factors that can lead to an arrest?
A. Knowing and reasonable cause to believe that the alleged offender is in possession of marijuana and/or the alleged offender knowingly and has reasonable cause to believe they sell, deliver, transport or cultivate marijuana.
Q. How will a marijuana arrest affect my life?
A. The arrest will show up on professional, housing and educational application, and can impact your professional, personal and social interactions. The arrest can lead to a denial of some government aid, a criminal record, harm your reputation in the community, affect your military status, and/or result in ineligibility to receive certain educational scholarships.
Q. What are some of the most effective defenses to a marijuana arrest?
A. Unlawful searches and seizures in violation of the U.S. Constitution’s Fourth Amendment, failure of law enforcement officials to give you Miranda warnings upon your arrest, and insufficient evidence to support the elements of the charge.
Q. What can a Columbus, Ohio attorney do to defend my case?
A. Your attorney can provide you with the most effective strategies to defend your case from start to finish, including tools such as filing a motion to suppress illegally obtained evidence or a motion to dismiss the charges against you.
Q. If my case goes to court, what are the factors that can lead to an acquittal or “not guilty” verdict?
A. If the judge or jury finds the prosecution fails to meet its burden of proving all of the elements of your marijuana charge beyond a reasonable doubt, you could be acquitted of the charges against you.
Q. What factors could lead to a dismissal of the marijuana charges brought against me?
A. A successful motion to suppress the evidence from your attorney, insufficient evidence, or participation in and successful completion of a drug treatment program could all lead to a dismissal of the charges against you.
A. Ohio has drug courts that some alleged offenders are eligible for instead of prison. Other options for punishment instead of jail or prison can include court-ordered participation in a drug treatment program, fines, community service or probation.
Joslyn Law Firm | Columbus First Marijuana Arrest Attorney
If you have been charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana, it is essential that you contact the Joslyn Law Firm immediately. Brian Joslyn of the Joslyn Law Firm is an experienced Columbus marijuana possession lawyer who will listen to the particular facts and circumstances of your case and tailor a defense that is right for you.
Call (614) 444-1900 for a consultation about your misdemeanor marijuana charges in Franklin County and surrounding counties, including Pickaway County, Madison County, Delaware County, Licking County and Fairfield County in Ohio.