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Understanding Controlled Substance Possession Charges in Ohio

Key Points on Drug Possession Offenses

  • In Ohio, holding illegal drugs is often a significant factor in drug-related offenses. The severity of possession charges can vary, with potential classification as felony crimes.
  • The implications of having even small quantities of unlawful substances can be severe with substantial penalties attached.
  • Consequences stemming from drug offense convictions carry the weight of long-lasting difficulties.

Have you found yourself facing allegations of drug possession within Mahoning County? It is imperative that you hold off on any discussions with law enforcement until you have sought the counsel of a legal expert. Seek out the services of Youngstown Criminal Law Group at the earliest opportunity.

Sean Loguestands as a seasoned defender against criminal charges within the Youngstown area, Take action by contacting us for a comprehensive and candid case review, free of charge and held in strict confidence.

Ohio’s Stance on Controlled Substance Possession

Ohio largely prohibits the acquisition, holding, or use of illicit drugs in accordance with Ohio Revised Code § 2925.11, sanctioned only for certain individuals with specific authorization.

Offenses surrounding the possession of controlled substances are gauged on various aspects:

  • The category of drug in question
  • The quantity of the drug involved
  • The alleged individual’s past criminal history

The code (Ohio Revised Code § 2925.11(C)) typically dictates the nature of sanctions for such transgressions.

DrugAmountOffense LevelGuidance
                      Schedule I or Schedule II Controlled SubstanceMinimal Quantity (Under Bulk Amount)  Classified as a fifth-degree felonyUnder Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B), minimal possession carries serious weight legally.  
Moderate Quantity (Bulk to Less Than 5 Times Bulk)Falls into a third-degree felony categoryThere’s a presumption in favor of prison time due to the increased quantity.
Substantial Quantity (5 to Less Than 50 Times Bulk)Sees an elevation to a second-degree felony.Slated for a mandatory prison sentence, reflecting the serious nature of the offense
High Quantity (50 to Less Than 100 Times Bulk)This level is assigned a first-degree felony charge.At this threshold, the law mandates prison time, no exceptions given.
Extreme Quantity (100 Times Bulk or More)Also a first-degree felony, this is as serious as it gets.Conviction leads to the maximum prison sentence allowed by law, underscoring the gravity of such substantial possession.
                        Schedule III, Schedule IV, or Schedule V Controlled SubstancePossession Below Bulk Amount  Possession Exceeding Fifty Times the Bulk Amount        There are no predefined penalties specifically mentioned for this level of offense.
Possession Equal to or Above Bulk Amount (But Less Than Five Times)    This level of possession is deemed a fourth-degree felony.Ohio Revised Code Section 2929.13(C)
Possession Five to Fifty Times Above Bulk Amount  Classified as a third-degree felony.Assumption favoring a term of imprisonment
Possession Exceeding Fifty Times the Bulk Amount  This constitutes a second-degree felony.Compulsory imprisonment sentence
                    Marijuana (marihuana)Possession under 100 gramsThis is considered a minor misdemeanor—a slap on the wristThere’s generally no jail time associated with this quantity
Between 100 grams and 200 gramsThe stakes get a bit higher here, as it’s pegged as a fourth-degree misdemeanor.  Still, incarceration isn’t a typical consequence
Between 200 grams and 999 gramsNow, we’re stepping into the realm of felonies—specifically, a fifth-degree felonyThe Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B) outlines the regulations for this offense.  
Amounts ranging from 1,000 grams to 5,000 grams  The offense is elevated to a third-degree felony.  Laws specific to these situations are detailed within the Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(C).  
Quantities between 5,000 grams and 20,000 gramsStill considered a third-degree felony but comes with a stronger assumption that prison time may be granted.  Still considered a third-degree felony but comes with a stronger assumption that prison time may be granted.    
From 20,000 grams to less than 40,000 gramsFelony of the second degreeA mandatory prison sentence ranging from five to eight years could be imposed
More than 40,000 gramsHere you face a second-degree felony charge.  However, there is a mandatory imposition of the maximum prison sentence allowable.  
                                          CocaineLess than 5 GramsClassified as a Fifth-degree felony  Referenced by Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B)  
5 to 9.99 GramsConsidered a Fourth-degree felonyGoverned by Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B)  
10 to 19.99 Grams  Becomes a more severe Third-degree felony  Normally carries a presumption for a prison term; however, if the individual has two or more previous felony drug abuse convictions, imprisonment becomes mandatory.  
20 to 26.99 Grams  Upgraded to a Second-degree felonyCarries a mandatory incarceration term upon conviction.  
27 to 99.99 Grams  Classed as a First-degree felony  Incurs a mandatory prison sentence.  
100 Grams or Above    Also a First-degree felony.  Mandatory imprisonment is extended for longer periods, or a larger fine could be charged against the accused.  
                                Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD)For smaller amounts, less than 10 doses in solid form or under 1 gram if in liquid form, the chargeclassified as a fifth-degree felonyThis can be referenced from the Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B).
Possessing at least 10 but fewer than 50 doses in solid form, or 1 gram to less than 5 grams inresults in a fourth-degree felony delineated in the Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(C).  
Having 50 to 249 doses in solid form, or 5 to under 25 grams in liquidone faces a third-degree felony.there’s a presumption of a prison sentence being applicable.
The stakes are raised even further for 250 to 999 doses in solid formlaw imposing a second-degree felonywith the law imposing a second-degree felony charge that carries a mandatory prison term.
Severe charges accompany possession of 1,000 to 4,999 unit doses in solid formconstituting a first-degree felonyconstituting a first-degree felony with a mandatory prison term
At the top of the scale, 5,000 unit doses or more in solid formmet with a first-degree felonymandatory maximum prison term under Ohio law.
            Heroinless than 10 unit doses (solid) or less than 1 gram (liquid)Classified as a Fifth-degree felonyOhio Revised Code § 2929.13(B)
Possessing 10 to 49 unit doses (solid) or 1 to 4.99 grams (liquid)  This is considered a Fourth-degree felony  Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(C)
Having 50 to 99 unit doses (solid) or 5 to 9.99 grams (liquid)Qualifies as a Third-degree felony  Usually involves a presumption for a prison term
When caught with 100 to 499 unit doses (solid) or 10 to 49.99 grams (liquid)Incurs a Second-degree felony penalty  Carries a mandatory prison term
For individuals holding 500 to 999 unit doses (solid) or 50 to 99.99 grams (liquid):  Results in a First-degree felony charge  A mandatory prison term applies  
Possession exceeding 1,000 unit doses (solid) or over 100 grams (liquid)Classified as a First-degree felony  Leads to a mandatory maximum prison term
              Hashish Less than 5 grams (solid) or less than 1 gram (liquid)Minor misdemeanorNo jail time
5 grams or more, but under 10 grams (solid); 1 gram or more, but under 2 grams (liquid)Fourth-degree misdemeanorNo incarceration
10 grams or more, but under 50 grams (solid); 2 grams or more, but under 10 grams (liquid)Fifth-degree felonyOhio Revised Code § 2929.13(B)
50 grams or more, but under 250 grams (solid); 10 grams or more but under 50 grams (liquid)Third-degree felonyOhio Revised Code § 2929.13(C
250 grams or more but under 1,000 grams (solid); 50 grams or more but under 200 grams (liquid)Third-degree felonyPresumed incarceration term
1,000 grams or more, but under 2,000 grams (solid); 200 grams or more, but under 400 grams (liquid)Second-degree felonyMandatory prison sentence of five to eight years
2,000 grams or more (solid); 400 grams or more (liquid)Second-degree felonyMaximum prison term
            Controlled substance analog (synthetic drugs)Possession Under 10 GramsClassified as a Fifth-Degree FelonyGoverned by Ohio Revised Code § 2929.13(B)  
Possessing 10 to Less Than 20 GramsCategorized as a Fourth-Degree Felony  Typically involves a Presumption for a Prison Term    
Holding 20 to Less Than 30 GramsFalls under a Third-Degree FelonyGeneral expectation includes a Presumption for a Prison Term    
Carrying 30 to Less Than 40 GramsDesignated as a Second-Degree FelonyThe law mandates a Prison Term  
Having 40 to Less Than 50 GramsRegarded as a First-Degree FelonyImposes a Mandatory Prison Term
In Possession of 50 Grams or More  Considered a serious First-Degree Felony  Dictates a Mandatory Maximum Prison Term

Possession of a Controlled Substance Penalties in Youngstown

Understanding the consequences of being convicted for drug-related offenses in Youngstown is crucial. The severity of the penalties largely hinges on the type of offense you’re accused of. We’ve simplified the potential penalties below, to make it easier for you to grasp what’s at stake:

Potential Penalties Based on the Offense Level:

  • Minor Misdemeanor:
  • A fine that could go as high as $100.
  • Fourth-Degree Misdemeanor:
  • Jail time of up to 30 days is possible.
  • Alternatively, or in addition to, a fine maxing out at $250.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor:
  • Possible jail time that could extend to 180 days.
  • A fine that could reach up to $1,000 might be imposed.
  • Fifth-Degree Felony:
  • A prison sentence could last up to 12 months.
  • An accompanying fine may be as much as $2,500.
  • Fourth-Degree Felony:
  • Up to 18 months might be spent in prison.
  • The fine could swell up to $5,000.
  • Third-Degree Felony:
  • A prison term that could extend to 60 months might be faced.
  • Additionally, there could be a fine not exceeding $10,000.
  • Second-Degree Felony:
  • Prison sentences might last up to eight years.
  • A hefty fine of up to $15,000 could also be expected.
  • First-Degree Felony:
  • The harshest of the penalties with prison time up to 11 years.
  • The fine can be as daunting as $20,000.

Facing these penalties can be an alarming prospect. It emphasizes the importance of understanding the law and its implications, or getting expert legal advice if you find yourself or someone you know in this situation

Navigating the complexities of drug possession charges in Ohio can be daunting. Secure the expertise of a Youngstown criminal lawyer to guide you through the process.

When facing allegations of possessing controlled substances in areas such as Youngstownor anywhere within Mahoning County, it’s crucial to engage a determined criminal defense counsel.

Experience That Matters – Attorney Sean Logue

 Youngstown criminal attorney Sean Loguestands as a bastion of defense, tirelessly striving to secure an outcome that minimizes potential penalties and impacts on your life.

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