Felony Possession of Marijuana
Possession of a “small amount” of marijuana is classified as a petty misdemeanor in Minnesota. Subdivision 16 of Minnesota Statute § 152.01 defines a small amount in regards to marijuana as meaning 42.5 grams or less.
When a person is in possession of more than 42.5 grams (slightly less than an ounce and a half) of cannabis, the crime becomes a felony offense. Felony convictions can have very serious immediate and long-term consequences.
Lawyer for Felony Marijuana Possession Arrests in Apple Valley, MN
Are you facing felony charges after being arrested for possession of cannabis in the Twin Cities? Do not delay in seeking legal representation.
Apple Valley criminal defense attorney James Blumberg of James Blumberg Law is a former prosecutor who defends clients in Coon Rapids, Brooklyn Park, Blaine, Woodbury, Plymouth, Maple Grove, Eden Prairie, and many nearby communities. You can set up a free consultation that will allow our lawyer to provide a complete evaluation of your case by calling (952) 431-7758 today.
Overview of Felony Marijuana Possession Charges in Minnesota
- What are the classifications of offenses for specific amounts of cannabis?
- What are the possible sentences if alleged offenders are convicted?
- Where can I learn more about marijuana issues in Minnesota?
When people are arrested for possessing cannabis, the criminal charge may be based on actual possession or constructive possession. Actual possession is generally the more obvious form of ownership when alleged offenders have marijuana in their hands, pockets, or purses.
Constructive possession involves cannabis being found in a location over which the alleged offender had some form of dominion or control. If marijuana is discovered in an automobile, it is possible for multiple people to be charged with constructive possession.
Any amount of cannabis over 42.5 grams is a felony offense, but the specific crime will depend on the actual amount in question. Felony marijuana possession crimes are classified as follows:
- More Than 42.5 Grams, But Less Than 10 Kilograms (352.74 Ounces) — Controlled Substance Crime in the Fifth Degree;
- 10 Kilograms or More, But Less Than 50 Kilograms (1763.7 Ounces) — Controlled Substance Crime in the Third Degree;
- 50 Kilograms or More, But Less Than 100 Kilograms (3,527.4 Ounces) — Controlled Substance Crime in the Second Degree; and
- 100 Kilograms or More — Controlled Substance Crime in the First Degree.
The possible sentence that an alleged offender faces if convicted of felony charges for possession of cannabis include:
- Controlled Substance Crime in the Fifth Degree — Under Minnesota Statute § 152.025, this offense is punishable by up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000 for a first offense, and a minimum of six months up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $20,000 for a subsequent offense;
- Controlled Substance Crime in the Third Degree — Under Minnesota Statute § 152.023, this offense is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000 for a first offense, and a minimum of two years up to 30 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000 for a subsequent offense;
- Controlled Substance Crime in the Second Degree — Under Minnesota Statute § 152.022, this offense is punishable by up to 25 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $500,000 for a first offense, and a minimum of three years up to 40 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $500,000 for a subsequent offense; and
- Controlled Substance Crime in the First Degree — Under Minnesota Statute § 152.021, this offense is punishable by up to 30 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $1 million for a first offense, and a minimum of four years up to 40 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $1 million for a subsequent offense.
In addition to imprisonment and fines, alleged offenders can also face a variety of additional consequences that can impact their lives long after their cases are closed. Some collateral consequences may include, but are not limited to, inability to obtain federal student aid, loss of firearm rights, and numerous hardships obtaining employment or housing.
Collateral Costs: Racial Disparities and Injustice in Minnesota’s Marijuana Laws — In April 2014, the non-partisan think tank Minnesota 2020 produced this report examining the racial disparities in marijuana possession arrest rates in Minnesota. According to the report, blacks in Minnesota were 6.4 times more likely than whites to be arrested for marijuana possession. You can find regional breakdowns of arrest rates as well as an examination of some of the direct and collateral costs of these arrests.
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Marijuana Anonymous (MA) | Minnesota — MA identifies itself as “a fellowship of men and women who share our experience, strength, and hope with each other that we may solve our common problem and help others to recover from marijuana addiction.” On this section of the MA website, you can find the dates, times, and locations of meetings in Minnesota. You can also learn more about the organization, find answers to frequently asked questions, and visit an online forum to discuss marijuana issues.
Find a Lawyer for Felony Possession of Marijuana Arrests in Dakota County
If you were arrested for allegedly being possession of more than 42.5 grams of marijuana in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, it is critical for you to retain legal counsel as soon as possible. James Blumberg Law helps residents and visitors facing marijuana charges in Ramsey County, Scott County, Washington County, Anoka County, Carver County, Dakota County, and Hennepin County.
James Blumberg is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Apple Valley representing clients in such communities as Minnetonka, St. Cloud, Bloomington, Burnsville, Eagan, Lakeville, and many more. He can review your case and help you understand all of your legal options as soon as you call (952) 431-7758 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free, confidential consultation.