Penalties For Possession Of Marijuana In Missouri

marijuana and drug paraphernalia tickets

Penalties for possession of marijuana in Missouri range from a $500 fine and no jail time (for first-time possession of 10 grams or less) to 7 years in prison and a $10,000 fine (for felony possession of more than 35 grams).

Here is a link to a chart showing Missouri penalties for possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, hash and concentrates, as well as the penalties for the sale, trafficking, distribution, and cultivation of marijuana in Missouri.

Possession of Marijuana Has Not Been Decriminalized in Missouri

Missouri law regarding marijuana possession considers marijuana a controlled substance, which is illegal to possess, use, grow, or sell in Missouri.

In 2017, the penalty for first-time possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana was decreased to just a fine of $500 and no possibility of jail time. Regardless of that fact, marijuana has not been decriminalized in Missouri.

Therefore, if you plead guilty to unlawful use of drug paraphernalia or possession of marijuana (even 10 grams or less), you will end up with a drug conviction on your criminal record. Having a drug conviction on your record will make it very difficult to find a job, rent an apartment, or get federal financial aid for college.

How To Avoid Getting Caught With Marijuana

The best way to avoid getting caught with weed is to restrict yourself to smoking it in your own home. If you smoke pot at home and decide to go out later, you should take a shower and change your clothes before leaving your house, and don’t bring any weed or paraphernalia with you. If you do bring weed or paraphernalia with you in your car, don’t leave it out in the open where a police officer could easily see it.

Of course, if you feel impaired in any way, do not drive, or else you risk getting charged with DUID (Driving Under the Influence of Drugs).

Even if you are not impaired, if a police officer pulls you over for a traffic violation and smells marijuana on your clothes or in your car, the officer can search your car without your consent. If the officer finds a baggy of weed or a one-hitter in your car, the officer may arrest you but will more likely just give you a ticket for possession of marijuana and/or drug paraphernalia and let you go.

For more helpful tips for avoiding a drug conviction, see my previous blog post “Best & Worst Places to Smoke Weed in Missouri.”

An Attorney Can Keep Marijuana Charges Off Your Criminal Record

You will need to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent you if you want to keep marijuana or drug paraphernalia charges off your criminal record.

It is very common for my clients to never have to appear in court. However, the outcome of your case depends on many factors, such as:

  • How old are you?
  • Do you have any prior drug-related arrests, charges, or convictions?
  • Which court is your case being prosecuted in?
  • How much marijuana were you caught with?
  • Were you cooperative and polite to the police officer?

Most attorneys offer a free consultation and can give you a flat-fee price quote for how much they will charge to represent you, including an estimate of the fines and court costs you will have to pay to the court to get your charges reduced.

________________________________________
Contact St. Louis marijuana lawyer Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or [email protected] for a free consultation about your Missouri marijuana or drug paraphernalia charges.

Don’t Plead Guilty To Possession Of 10 Grams Or Less Of Marijuana

medical marijuana card

There is no possibility of jail time for first-time possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana in Missouri, but the conviction will show up on your criminal record if you plead guilty.

Penalty For Possession of 10 Grams Or Less Of Marijuana In Missouri

First-time possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana is a class D misdemeanor with a maximum punishment of a $500 fine but no jail time.

If you are NOT a first-time offender, possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana is a class A misdemeanor with a maximum punishment of 1 year in jail and a $2,000 fine.

The maximum penalty for possession of more than 10 grams but less than 35 grams of marijuana is 1 year in jail and a $2,000 fine.

Marijuana Possession Has Not Been “Decriminalized” In Missouri

It is common for some police officers to issue a ticket for possession of 10 grams or less of weed and advise the suspect to plead guilty and pay the fine because it’s “just like a speeding ticket,” but that is incorrect.

If you plead guilty to possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana, you will end up with a drug conviction on your permanent criminal record. This is true even if you are a first-time offender with no possibility of jail time.

Having a drug conviction on your criminal record will prevent you from getting a job or internship, and it will cause landlords to refuse to rent an apartment to you. You can also lose federal student aid for college if you are convicted of a drug-related offense. In addition, you can be evicted from government-subsidized housing because of a marijuana conviction.

Don’t Plead Guilty To 10 Grams Or Less of Marijuana

Instead of pleading guilty to possession of any amount of marijuana or drug paraphernalia, you can hire a criminal defense attorney to get your drug charge dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense, such as “Littering.”

If your case is being prosecuted in a municipal court and your attorney gets your marijuana ticket reduced to “Littering,” nothing will show up on your criminal record because most courts don’t report low-level offenses such as “Littering” to the Missouri State Police.

Hire A Lawyer To Get Your Marijuana Ticket Reduced To “Littering”

Criminal defense attorneys usually offer a free consultation and a flat-fee price quote for how much they will charge to represent you.

If you hire an attorney to represent you for your marijuana ticket, they will review your case and give you an estimate of the most likely outcome, which depends on the following factors:

  • How old are you?
  • How bad is your criminal history?
  • Which court is your case being prosecuted in?
  • How much marijuana did you have in your possession?
  • Were you honest and cooperative with the police officer?
  • Is your attorney experienced in handling marijuana charges?

Most misdemeanor marijuana or drug paraphernalia cases don’t go to trial, so your attorney can handle everything without requiring you to appear in court. Your attorney will negotiate a plea bargain deal with the Prosecutor which may involve one of the following options:

  • Dismissal – this requires community service and/or drug education class, but no fine
  • Deferred Prosecution/Diversion Program – your case will be dismissed after 6 months or 1 year of good behavior – you will pay a fine and court costs and may also have to take a drug education class
  • Reduction to “Littering” – your marijuana charge gets reduced to “Littering” – you will have to pay a fine and court costs
  • Suspended Imposition of Sentence With Probation – no fine, pay court costs, do community service and/or take a drug education class, court appearance with attorney is required – case is closed after probation is completed.

 

For more information about how to avoid getting charged with marijuana possession, see my previous post “Best & Worst Places to Smoke Weed in Missouri.”

________________________________________

Call St. Louis marijuana attorney Andrea Storey Rogers for help with your Missouri drug charges. Call Andrea at (314) 724-5059 or email her at [email protected] for a free consultation and a flat-fee price quote.

 

How To Keep Possession Of Marijuana Charges Off Your Criminal Record

medical marijuana card

Keep possession of marijuana charges off your criminal record by hiring an attorney to get them dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense.

Missouri Marijuana Penalties Can Include Jail Time

The maximum penalties for misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance (marijuana) or drug paraphernalia in Missouri are:

  • 10 Grams or Less of Marijuana (first-time offender) = $500 fine but no jail time
  • 10 Grams or Less of Marijuana (not a first-time offender) = $2,000 fine and 1 year in jail
  • Drug Paraphernalia (first-time offender) = $500 fine but no jail time
  • Drug Paraphernalia (not a first-time offender) = $2,000 fine and 1 year in jail
  • 11 to 35 grams of Marijuana= $2,000 fine and 1 year in jail

If you plead guilty to any of the criminal offenses listed above, you will have a drug conviction on your criminal record, regardless of whether your case is prosecuted in state court or municipal court. This is true even if you are a first-time offender charged with a crime for which there is no possibility of jail time.

Missouri’s law regarding possession of a controlled substance is RSMO 579.015

Missouri’s law regarding unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia is RSMO 579.074

For more information about Missouri’s marijuana laws, you can read my previous blog post, “Marijuana Has Not Been Decriminalized in Missouri.”

How Long Does Possession Of Marijuana Stay On Your Criminal Record?

If you plead guilty to possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia, the conviction will stay on your criminal record forever unless you get it expunged.

Missouri’s new expungement law that went into effect January 1, 2018 provides people with the opportunity to expunge misdemeanor marijuana and drug paraphernalia convictions. You must have a clean record for 3 years before filing the petition for expungement, and there is a lifetime limit of 2 misdemeanors that you can get expunged.

I discussed Missouri’s new expungement law in my previous blog post “Missouri’s New Expungement Law Allows Many Misdemeanor & Felony Criminal Records To Be Sealed.”

Why You Should Not Plead Guilty To Possession Of Marijuana

Even if you were caught with just a pipe or a very small amount of pot, you will have a drug conviction on your permanent criminal record if you plead guilty.

Having a conviction for misdemeanor marijuana or drug paraphernalia can prevent you from getting a job, renting an apartment, getting a scholarship, or obtaining federal student aid. Drug convictions can also cause you to be evicted from government subsidized housing.

An Attorney Can Get Your Marijuana & Drug Paraphernalia Charges Dismissed Or Reduced To A Less Serious Offense

If you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia, here are your options:

  • Go to court on your own without an attorney and plead guilty (not recommended)
  • Go to court and plead not guilty and have a trial (expensive, and you risk being convicted)
  • Go to court and ask the judge for a continuance of the court date (this gives you more time to hire an attorney)
  • Hire an attorney to get your drug charges dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense, such as “Littering”

Pleading guilty to possession of a controlled substance or drug paraphernalia is a bad idea because you will end up with a drug conviction on your permanent criminal record.

Going to trial for drug possession is risky and expensive, and you lose the opportunity to get a favorable plea bargain deal.

Having an experienced attorney represent you is your best option if you want to avoid having a drug conviction on your criminal record. Your attorney will advocate for you and negotiate the best possible plea bargain deal for you.

The outcome of your case depends on many factors, but your attorney may be able to get your charges completely dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense, such as “Littering.”

What To Do If You Can’t Afford An Attorney To Represent You For Your Marijuana Ticket

In most counties in Missouri, public defenders do not represent people charged with misdemeanor marijuana or drug paraphernalia in municipal court.

If your marijuana or drug paraphernalia case is being prosecuted in state court instead of municipal court and you can’t afford to hire a private attorney, you can contact the Missouri public defender’s office in the county in which you were charged to see if you qualify for a public defender.

You will have to fill out an application and provide proof of your finances before the public defender’s office will consider representing you. If someone paid your bond for you, or if you have any assets, the public defender may refuse to represent you. You could also go to court and ask the judge to appoint an attorney to represent you, but that option is not available in all courts.

________________________________________
For a free consultation about your Missouri marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket, contact criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email Andrea at [email protected]

Best & Worst Places to Smoke Weed in Missouri

Here are the best and worst places to smoke weed in Missouri if you want to avoid marijuana or drug paraphernalia possession charges:

WORST PLACES TO SMOKE WEED IN MISSOURI:

In Your Apartment – your neighbors can smell the marijuana smoke coming from your apartment and may call the police

Camping at a State Park – park rangers patrol campsites and can issue tickets for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Your case will be prosecuted in state court, which is much more strict than if your case were in municipal court.

On a Float Trip – park rangers patrol the rivers and sandbars and issue tickets for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Your case will be prosecuted in state court.

At a Park – police patrol parks because it’s a common place where people go to sit in their cars and smoke marijuana at night

In a Car Parked on the Street at Night – nearby homeowners will call the police if they see an unfamiliar car parked on their street at night and they suspect criminal activity

At the St. Louis Arch – the Arch is a national monument located in a national park, so if you get caught with weed or a pipe, your criminal charges will be prosecuted in federal court instead of state court or municipal court

In the Parking Lot Before a Concert at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre in St. Louis – plain clothes police officers patrol the parking lot before concerts and issue numerous tickets to people who don’t realize everyone can see (and smell) them smoking weed in their car

Driving in Your Car – don’t drive if you are high or feeling buzzed. You could crash your car and injure yourself or others, and you could be charged with DUID (driving under the influence of drugs), possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia. 

BEST PLACE TO SMOKE WEED IN MISSOURI:

In the privacy of your own home.

GENERAL TIPS FOR MARIJUANA SMOKERS:

  • Having a prescription for medical marijuana from a state in which marijuana is legal will not help if you get caught with weed in Missouri, where it is illegal.
  • After smoking marijuana, shower and change clothes before leaving home or driving in your car. If you are pulled over by a cop and they smell weed when you roll down the car window, the cop can search your car without your consent and without a warrant.
  • Don’t hide weed or a pipe in your luggage or on your body if you are flying somewhere. If TSA agents find your one-hitter or baggie of weed in your luggage or on your body, you can be charged with possession of marijuana or paraphernalia, and the criminal charges against you could be prosecuted in federal, state, or municipal court.

Jail Time is a Possible Punishment for Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession in Missouri

The maximum potential penalty for misdemeanor (35 grams or less) possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri is a $1,000 fine and 1 year in jail.

It is highly unlikely that you will face any jail time if you hire an attorney to represent you for your misdemeanor drug charges. 

Drug-Related Convictions Stay On Your Criminal Record Forever

Drug convictions stay on your criminal record forever and can not be “expunged” (removed). If you plead guilty to charges of marijuana or drug paraphernalia possession, you will have a very hard time finding a job, renting an apartment, or getting federal student loans for college.

In addition, you could lose your federally subsidized housing if you are convicted of a drug-related misdemeanor.

Hire a Lawyer to Get Your Drug Charges Dismissed or Reduced to a Lesser Offense

Hire an experienced marijuana possession attorney to get your drug charges dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense, such as “Littering.”

The outcome of your case depends on 1) which court your case is being prosecuted in and 2) whether you have prior drug-related convictions on your criminal record.

Your attorney will negotiate a plea bargain deal with the Prosecutor to get your drug charges dismissed or amended to a lesser offense. It is very likely that you will not have to appear in court, and the court will give you at least 30 days to pay fines and court costs.


To fight your marijuana or drug paraphernalia charges in Missouri, call St. Louis marijuana attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email Andrea at [email protected] to discuss your case and get a price quote for legal representation.

How to Avoid a Marijuana Conviction

Here are a few handy tips for avoiding marijuana or drug paraphernalia charges:

  • Don’t carry marijuana or drug paraphernalia in your car or in your pocket.
  • Don’t take marijuana or drug paraphernalia with you when you travel.
  • If you smoke marijuana at home, take a shower and change clothes before leaving home. If a cop pulls you over and smells weed on you, that gives him probable cause to search your vehicle.
  • Don’t smoke in a parked car at night with your friends. When police ask you to roll down the car window and marijuana smoke billows out (remember that scene in the Cheech & Chong movie?), it gives police probable cause to search your vehicle – without a warrant and without your consent.
  • Don’t smoke weed while sitting in your car in the parking lot at the Verizon Center in Maryland Heights before attending a concert. This is pretty specific, but it applies to any parking lot at any concert venue. Lots of plain clothes police officers patrol parking lots outside concerts.
  • If you’re high or feeling buzzed, don’t drive. You’re a danger to yourself and others on the road, and you risk being charged with DUID (driving while under the influence of drugs).

All Passengers in the Car May be Charged with Possession of Marijuana

When a police officer finds a marijuana blunt in the console of your car, a one-hitter hidden under the seat, or a small baggie of weed in your car, you and all the passengers in your car may be issued tickets for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. This may happen even if one hero tries to accept sole responsibility for the drugs.

The reason for this is something called “constructive possession.” The court presumes everyone in the car knew the drugs were there and everyone had access to the drugs, so everyone was in “constructive possession” of the drugs or paraphernalia.

What is the Penalty for Marijuana Possession in Missouri?

The maximum sentence you can receive in Missouri for misdemeanor possession of marijuana (35 grams or less) or possession of drug paraphernalia is a fine of $1,000 and 1 year in jail.

You Can Lose Your Driver’s License if Caught with Marijuana in Your Car

If you are under age 21 and you get caught with marijuana in your car, you can be charged under Missouri’s “Abuse & Lose” law. If you plead guilty or are convicted under “Abuse & Lose,” your driver’s license will be suspended for anywhere from 30 days to 1 year. The length of the suspension depends on whether your case is being prosecuted in municipal court or state circuit court, and it also depends on whether or not this is your first offense.

Drug-Related Convictions Can Not be Expunged From Your Criminal Record

What’s worse than being fined or thrown in jail is that a conviction for possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia stays on your criminal record forever and can never be “expunged” (removed). With a drug-related conviction on your permanent criminal record, you will have a very hard time finding a job, renting an apartment, or getting a bank loan or federal student aid loan.

An Attorney Can Help You Avoid a Marijuana Possession Conviction

In most cases, an experienced marijuana possession attorney can help you avoid a conviction for possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia. The outcome depends on the following:

  • Which court your case is being prosecuted in. (Not all courts handle drug cases the same way.)
  • Your age & criminal history. (Do you have prior drug-related convictions?)
  • The details of your particular case. (Were you cooperative with the police?)

Often, an experienced attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the court so that your drug possession charge is dismissed or amended to a lesser offense, such as “Littering.” If your attorney is able to obtain this type of plea bargain deal, you may not have to appear in court at all.


If you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri and would like a free consultation with a drug possession lawyer, call St. Louis attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email Andrea at [email protected] to discuss your case and receive a price quote for legal representation.

New Law Reduces Penalties for Marijuana Possession

First-time possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana will be reduced from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class D misdemeanor in Missouri as of January 1, 2017.

This means the maximum penalty for first-time possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana will be reduced to a fine of $500 and no jail time.

No Change in Punishment for Marijuana Possession if You Have Prior Convictions

If you have a prior drug-related conviction on your criminal record, possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana will still be considered a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Possession of 11 to 35 Grams of Marijuana Will Still be Considered a Class A Misdemeanor 

Currently, possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana is a Class A misdemeanor in Missouri. Under the new law, possession of 11 to 35 grams of marijuana will be charged as a Class A misdemeanor, with a potential penalty of 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Drug Paraphernalia Possession Penalties Will be Reduced 

The new law will reduce first-time possession of drug paraphernalia to a Class D misdemeanor. If you have any prior drug-related convictions on your criminal record, an offense of drug paraphernalia possession will be charged as a Class A misdemeanor. (Currently, drug paraphernalia possession is a Class D felony if you have prior convictions.)

To read more about the new Missouri laws taking effect on January 1, 2017, click here to read the unofficial text of Senate Bill 491. The section relating to possession of a controlled substance is §579.015.

For more information about drug possession charges in Missouri, click here to read my previous blog post about how to fight a marijuana possession charge.


If you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri, call St. Louis marijuana attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a free consultation and price quote for legal representation. Or email Andrea at [email protected] or at [email protected]

Illinois Legalizes Medical Marijuana

Medical marijuana use will be legal in Illinois beginning on January 1, 2014.

People who suffer from cancer, HIV/AIDs, multiple sclerosis, ALS, lupus, muscular dystrophy, and many other serious illnesses and diseases will be able to buy up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana every two weeks from state-run dispensaries.

Growing your own marijuana will still be illegal.

Click here to find out how to qualify for medical marijuana use in Illinois.

For more information, read this recent Associated Press news article about the new Illinois medical marijuana law.

Fighting Marijuana Possession Charges

A lawyer can help get your marijuana possession charge reduced.

Cases involving possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia are not handled in the same way in every court. Some judges are stricter than others in their sentencing.

In many courts, if you have been charged with misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance and you have no prior convictions for drug-related offenses, an attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the court to have the drug possession charge reduced to a lesser offense, such as “Littering.” Depending on which court your case is being prosecuted in, you might not have to appear in court at all, but you will have to pay a fine and court costs.

When deciding whether to reduce your drug charges, the court will consider many factors, such as your age, criminal history, and the details of your case.

Some Courts Will Not Reduce Marijuana Charges

In some courts, it is not possible to negotiate a plea bargain for a drug possession or paraphernalia charge, even if you’re caught with only a small amount of weed, your record is clean, and you have no prior drug convictions. If your case is being prosecuted in a court with a very strict drug possession policy, it is very likely that the best plea-bargain deal your attorney can negotiate for you is an SIS (Suspended Imposition of Sentence) with probation.

What is an SIS for Drug Possession?

If you are offered a plea bargain deal called an SIS with probation, you will have to appear in court with your attorney to plead guilty to the original drug possession charges. You won’t have to pay a fine but you will have to pay court costs and sign up for probation. If you successfully complete the probation period without any violations, your case will be closed and no conviction will be reported on your criminal record.

The probation period is typically 1-2 years, depending on the court, and it is usually unsupervised (“limited”) probation. You may also be required to perform several hours of community service and/or attend a drug education class.

How to Decide Whether to Fight a Drug Possession Case

Instead of hiring an attorney to negotiate a plea-bargain deal for your drug possession charges, some defendants choose to go to trial.

Before deciding to fight your drug charges in court, consult an attorney to determine your chances of winning. It will cost much more to have a court trial than to negotiate a plea bargain, and there is always the possibility that you will lose.

It may be worth it if you can afford the expense of a trial, and if there is strong evidence that the search of your car or home that led to the discovery of the drugs or paraphernalia was an illegal search. However, if you go to trial and lose, you will no longer have the opportunity to negotiate a plea bargain deal, and the judge will sentence you to jail time and/or a fine.

Marijuana Possession Penalties in Missouri

The maximum sentence for misdemeanor possession of marijuana (35 grams or less) or drug paraphernalia in Missouri is 1 year in jail and a fine of $1,000.


If you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri and would like a free consultation with a drug possession lawyer, call St. Louis attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email Andrea at [email protected] to discuss your case and receive a price quote for legal representation.

Where is Medical Marijuana Legal?

Medical marijuana is legal in 18 states and the District of Columbia, and in February 2013, legislation was proposed in the Missouri House of Representatives to legalize medical marijuana in Missouri.

A federal law makes it illegal to possess or distribute marijuana in the United States, but the following states contradict federal law by permitting the use of marijuana for medical purposes:

Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia all allow the use of medical marijuana to relieve pain, anxiety and nausea in people suffering from such diseases as cancer, glaucoma, AIDs, Parkinson’s, and multiple sclerosis.

Which States Will Be Next to Legalize Medical Marijuana?

The following 10 states have pending legislation to legalize medical marijuana or medical cannabis:  Alabama, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, and West Virginia. Click here for a summary of proposed legislation to legalize medical marijuana.

Legislation is Pending in Missouri to Legalize Medical Marijuana

In February 2013, Missouri Rep. Mike Colona (D-St. Louis City) reintroduced legislation to remove criminal penalties for the medical use of marijuana. House Bill 688 would allow patients with a doctor’s approval to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana and grow up to three mature pot plants and up to four immature pot plants. HB 688 also authorizes the state to license nonprofit medical marijuana dispensaries.

Recreational Use of Marijuana is Legal Only in Colorado and Washington

On November 6, 2012, Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. In those states, anyone age 21 or over can possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana for personal use. If you want to grow your own, Colorado limits you to 6 pot plants per person. Washington does not allow cultivation of marijuana plants.

In addition to Colorado and Washington, Oregon was the only other state to have a proposition on its ballot in November 2012 to allow the recreational use of marijuana, but voters failed to approve it.

Call St. Louis criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a price quote for legal representation if you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri. Or email Andrea at [email protected].


Missouri Marijuana Possession Laws

The maximum penalty for misdemeanor possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri is 1 year in jail and a fine of $2,000.

Drug convictions remain on your permanent criminal record forever and can never be expunged (removed). Having a drug conviction on your record can prevent you from getting a job, renting an apartment, obtaining a loan from a bank, being accepted into college, or receiving federal student loans.

How Much Marijuana Qualifies as a Misdemeanor?

Possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana (weed, pot) is considered a class A misdemeanor in Missouri. (28.35 grams = 1 ounce) Possession of any type of drug paraphernalia (pipe, bong, rolling papers, syringes, needles, etc.) is a class A misdemeanor, as well.

If convicted, the maximum sentence for misdemeanor possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia is 1 year in jail and a fine of $2,000.

If you are a first-time offender caught with drug paraphernalia or 10 grams or less of marijuana, the maximum penalty is a fine of $500 but no jail time.

How Much Marijuana Qualifies as a Felony in Missouri?  

Possession of more than 35 grams to 30 kg of marijuana is felony drug possession in Missouri. The potential sentence is 7 years in prison plus a fine of $10,000.

How Much Prison Time Can You Get for Drug Paraphernalia Possession?

Possession of drug paraphernalia is a misdemeanor in Missouri, punishable by up to 1 year in prison and a fine of up to $2,000. If you are a first-time offender, the maximum penalty for possession of drug paraphernalia is a $500 fine but no jail time.

Manufacturing Drug Paraphernalia is a Felony

Manufacturing drug paraphernalia for commercial purposes is a felony with a maximum sentence of 4 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

Any Amount Over 30 kg Qualifies as Drug Trafficking  

To qualify as “drug trafficking,” you must be charged with possession of any amount of drugs over 30 kg. Possession of 30 kg to 100 kg is a felony with a potential sentence of 3-10 years in prison plus a fine of $10,000. The penalty for possession of 100 kg or more is 5-15 years in prison and a fine equal to twice the profit.

Penalties for Growing Marijuana in Missouri

Growing 35 grams or less of marijuana is a felony in Missouri. The potential penalty is up to 4 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.

The penalty for growing more than 35 grams of marijuana in Missouri is 3-10 years in prison and a fine of $10,000.

Higher Penalties for Selling Marijuana Near a School

Any sale of marijuana near a school, park, or public housing increases the penalty to 10 – 30 years, or life in prison and a fine equal to twice the profit.

The maximum penalty for selling 35 grams or less of marijuana to a minor is 5 to 15 years in prison and a fine equal to twice the profit.

Driving While Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID)

Driving while under the influence of drugs (DUID) is treated like a DWI/DUI (alcohol). Unlike a DUI for alcohol, you can be charged with DUID if there is any amount of drugs in your system and a police officer observes that your ability to drive is impaired.

Your Driver’s License Can be Suspended for Under-Age Drug Convictions or Refusal to Take Drug Test

Your driver’s license can be suspended if you are convicted of any offense involving the possession or use of drugs and you were under age 21 at the time of the offense. The suspension may be for 90 days for a first offense or 1 year for a subsequent offense.

If a police officer asks you to take a drug test and you refuse, your Missouri driver’s license will be revoked for 1 year.

See my previous blog post for more information about what to do if you are charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri.

Call St. Louis criminal defense attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a free consultation if you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri. Or email Andrea at [email protected].