How To Fight Your Marijuana or Drug Paraphernalia Ticket

Posted on

Fight your Missouri marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket by hiring an experienced attorney to get your drug charges dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense, such as “Littering.”

The outcome of your case depends on many factors, including the following:

  • Which court is your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket being prosecuted in?
  • Do you have any prior drug-related arrests, charges, or convictions?
  • Did you confess to the police officer that you were in possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia?
  • How old are you?

An Attorney Can Fight Your Marijuana or Drug Paraphernalia Charges

Most criminal defense attorneys offer a free consultation, in which they will discuss your case and help you determine whether you should go to trial or negotiate a plea bargain deal to get your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense, such as “Littering.”

If you choose the plea bargain option, your attorney will negotiate a plea bargain deal with the Prosecuting Attorney, guide you through the entire court process, and appear in court with you if a court appearance is required. Some of the possible plea bargain deals your attorney could negotiate on your behalf include:

  • Dismiss your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket after completion of a Diversion Program
  • Reduce your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket to a lesser offense, such as “Littering”
  • Dismiss your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket after completion of a drug education class and/or community service
  • Dismiss your marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket after completion of a period of probation

Punishment for Misdemeanor Marijuana Possession or Drug Paraphernalia

Here is a list of the maximum potential penalties in Missouri for misdemeanor marijuana or drug paraphernalia tickets:

  • 1st-time offense – 10 grams or less of marijuana:  $500 fine & no jail time
  • 1st-time offense – drug paraphernalia:  $500 fine & no jail time
  • 2nd-time offense – 10 grams or less of marijuana:  $2,000 fine & 1 year in jail
  • 2nd-time offense – drug paraphernalia:  $2,000 fine & 1 year in jail
  • Possession of 11 to 35 grams of marijuana:  $2,000 fine & 1 year in jail
  • Possession of 36 grams – 30kg is a felony:  $10,000 fine & 7 years in prison

*It is highly unlikely that you will face any jail time for possession of a small amount of weed or drug paraphernalia if you have an experienced attorney representing you.

Click here for more information about Missouri possession of controlled substances law.

Marijuana or Drug Paraphernalia Possession Has NOT Been “De-Criminalized”

Possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana or drug paraphernalia are still considered crimes, and if you plead guilty, you will end up with a drug conviction on your criminal record.

A recent change in Missouri law removed the possibility of jail time for a first-time offense of possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana or a first-time offense of possession of drug paraphernalia, so that’s why some people believe possession of a small amount of marijuana or drug paraphernalia has been “de-criminalized.” However, this is misleading because you will still be considered a criminal with a drug conviction on your record if you plead guilty to 10 grams or less of marijuana or drug paraphernalia in Missouri.

If you have any prior drug-related arrests, charges, or convictions on your criminal record and you get caught with 10 grams or less of marijuana or drug paraphernalia, you are NOT considered a first-time offender, so the maximum penalty would be a $2,000 fine and 1 year in jail, instead of a $500 fine and no jail time.

Don’t Plead Guilty to Marijuana Possession or Drug Paraphernalia

Police officers often tell defendants that a marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket is just like a speeding ticket, and all the defendant has to do is go to court and pay the fine.

PLEASE NOTE:

  • Don’t take legal advice from the police officer who is giving you a ticket.
  • A ticket for 10 grams or less of marijuana is NOT the same as a speeding ticket.

It may be tempting to plead guilty and pay the $150 fine for a marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket you received at a concert in Maryland Heights (for example) instead of hiring a lawyer to get you a better deal. But if you plead guilty, you will end up with a drug conviction on your permanent criminal record, which will prevent you from getting a job, renting an apartment, or obtaining federal financial aid for college. You may also be evicted from government-subsidized housing if you plead guilty to a marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket.

In the short term, it is much cheaper to just pay the fine for a marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket and be done with it, but having a drug conviction on your criminal record will cost you much more in the long run.

 


To fight your Missouri marijuana or drug paraphernalia ticket, call St. Louis marijuana attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email her at arogers@rogerslawfirmllc.com for a free consultation and a flat-fee price quote for legal representation.

Latest Blog Posts

Where to Do Community Service in Missouri

Read More

How To Fight Your Marijuana or Drug Paraphernalia Ticket

Read More

Minor in Possession of Alcohol Tickets Can Be Dismissed or Reduced To a Lesser Offense

Read More

Client Testimonials

Contact Me Today!

Include your case/ticket number, court name, and charge (speeding, shoplifting, marijuana, etc.) and Andrea will respond promptly with a price quote and an estimate of your fines and court costs.
* indicates required information.