As more states across the nation legalize marijuana for recreational use, medical use or both, you may wonder if Texas is one of them. Is it legal in the Longhorn State to use or possess marijuana under any circumstances?
In short, the answer is no. The possession or sale of marijuana in any amount continues to remain illegal under state law. Per Criminal Defense Lawyer by Nolo, Texas law categorizes weed as a Schedule 1 substance, which means it has a high potential for abuse and has zero medical value. As a result, the state recognizes the possession, cultivation and sale of the drug as a criminal offense and doles out harsh penalties to offenders.
Penalties for Possession and Cultivation of Marijuana in Texas
In Texas, it is a crime to either possess or cultivate marijuana in any amount. If an officer catches you doing either, you face misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on the amount of the drug in your possession. Below is a breakdown of the types of charges you face and the associated punishments:
- Possession of two or fewer ounces is a Class B misdemeanor and may result in a fine of up to $2,000 and/or up to 180 days in jail
- Possession of less than four but more than two ounces is a Class A misdemeanor and may result in a fine of up to $4,000 and/or one year in jail
- Possession of between five ounces and 50 pounds is a felony of the third degree and may result in a fine of up to $10,000 and/or between two and 10 years in prison.
- Possession of between 50 and 2,000 pounds is a felony of the second degree and may result in a fine of up to $10,000 and/or between two and 20 years in prison
- Possession of more than 2,000 pounds can result in at least five years in prison but no more than 99 and/or a fine of up to $50,000
These penalties apply to cultivation as well. The state may increase your penalties if it catches you with marijuana in a drug-free zone, such as near a school, youth center or playground.
Penalties for Selling Marijuana in Texas
The penalties for selling marijuana in Texas are similar to those associated with possession and cultivation. If caught selling or gifting one-quarter of an ounce or less, the state may charge you with a Class B misdemeanor. The charges go up in accordance with the same schedule above for every so many ounces over one-quarter of an ounce you sold or were planning to sell. The punishments for selling the drug within state boundaries range from 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine to between 10 and 99 years in prison and a $100,000 fine.
If you face marijuana charges in Texas, you stand a lot to lose. Do not risk your freedom or your future and get the help you need as soon as possible.