Does Pot Legalization Causes Confusion to Consumers?
Although a few states have passed laws legalizing marijuana for both recreational and medical use, Texas is among the majority with laws on the book that prevent citizens from buying, using, or selling this drug. Even though close to 61% of the state’s citizens say that they are in favor of legalizing marijuana, marijuana is still considered an illegal drug that could land citizens in legal trouble if they are caught with it in their possession.
People who come to this state, as well as people who live in Texas, may be confused when it comes to marijuana’s legal status, however. Rather than face arrest and criminal charges, people in possession of this drug can avoid such penalties by being aware of the state’s laws regarding marijuana.
People who travel through this state are generally barred from having this substance in their vehicles. If they are found to be in possession of marijuana, yet claim that they have the legal right to use it for medicinal purposes, these people bear the burden of proving their claim.
They must have the necessary paperwork in their possession at the time of their detainment or face criminal charges. If people from states like California, Colorado, and other states with legal marijuana use laws travel to Texas, they must have documents from their home states showing that they can legally use this drug.
A Misdemeanor or Felony?
Texas has very clear laws that separate misdemeanor possession and felony possession of marijuana. If someone is found to possess less than 2 ounces of marijuana, that person would most likely face a Class B misdemeanor charge and could serve up to 6 months in jail, as well as pay a fine of $2000 or less. That same person may also lose his or her driver’s license for up to 180 days.
However, someone who is in possession of 4 ounces or more of marijuana could face a felony drug charge and serve up to 2 years in prison and pay a fine of $100,000. A felony marijuana drug charge is a very serious offense in this state. People who serve time in jail for this charge often find it difficult to move on with their lives and find employment after they are released from jail.
With this state’s laws in place regarding marijuana possession, the best way for people to avoid legal trouble would be to steer clear or buying, selling, or possessing marijuana altogether. Even so, some people who want to use it for medical purposes may be most at risk of suffering the legal side effects of marijuana use in this state.
As witnessed in a recent case in Houston, a man who bought this drug for his personal use was arrested and detained to face charges in court. However, he died in jail before he could see a judge.
While most offenders are safe in jail, their futures are often in peril as they face severe penalties under the state laws. People are arrested for marijuana can protect themselves best when they hire a criminal defense lawyer in Houston or Dallas Texas immediately after their arrests.
Texas lawmakers continue to debate whether or not to legalize marijuana. Until they do, people who live in or visit this state can protect themselves by keeping this important information in mind before they buy, sell, or use marijuana.
Jamica Bell is a freelance writer and parent to young adults. With as much talk of pot legalization, she has had many discussions with people who are confused about whether it is really legal to smoke marijuana. Researching resources, including a criminal defense attorney in Houston, has been very helpful with answering this question and for individuals seeking help after being charged with marijuana possession.
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