Overview of California’s Marijuana Possession Laws
As you may know, attitudes about the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana are changing throughout the United States. While a number of states have recognized the medicinal benefits of cannabis, most still uphold strict laws against the possession and/or use of this drug. Fortunately for California residents, the penalties for marijuana possession in this state are not quite as severe as those imposed in other parts of the country. Even so, you should not take these charges lightly. Depending on the type and amount of marijuana that is discovered in your possession, you could either be slapped with an infraction or charged with a serious criminal offense. This will be decided as follows:
Possession of less than 28.5 grams
- This is an infraction, which means that no arrest or imprisonment will be required; however, you will be asked to pay a $100 fine. With added fees, the cost could be as high as $485.
Possession of 28.5 grams or more
- This is a misdemeanor, which means that you could be arrested and sentenced to six months in jail if you are found guilty. You may also be asked to pay a $500 fine.
Possession of concentrated cannabis
- This is a "wobbler," which means that it could either be charged as a misdemeanor or felony; however, this crime is typically punishable by up to one year in jail and a $500 fine.
It is important to understand that there are numerous other circumstances under which your charges could be enhanced. For example, you could be charged with a misdemeanor drug crime if you, as an individual under the age of 18, were found to be in possession of less than 28.5 grams of marijuana while on school grounds. Similarly, a marijuana possession infraction could quickly turn into a driving under the influence (DUI) charge if the drug was discovered in your vehicle. If the arresting officer suspects that you intended to sell the marijuana, additional charges could be waged against you for possession with intent to sell. For this reason, you should always take these charges seriously.
If you or someone you love is currently facing charges for marijuana possession, the legal team at JD Law encourages you to get in touch with our San Diego criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Not only is he a Certified Criminal Defense Specialist, but he has experience as a former narcotics investigator—which means that he can contribute valuable insight to your defense. All you have to do to get started is give us a call today at (619) 377-3722. It won't cost you a thing to seek advice from our San Diego drug crime attorney, so there is no reason why you should wait any longer to take the first step.