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What are Tennessee’s Drug Laws and Regulations?

Posted on March 5, 2023 in

Drug crimes in the state of Tennessee carry with them stiff penalties. Even misdemeanor charges can have a negative impact on your future and are worth fighting. The charges for drug crimes can range from rehabilitative measures to time in jail or prison.

Convictions for drug crimes vary depending on the specifics of your case and the severity of the charges. With a conviction comes fines, possible prison or jail time, and the long-lasting consequences of living with a criminal record. It is important to understand Tennesee’s Drug laws and regulations and how to fight charges if it ever comes to that.

Common Drug Charges in Tennessee

Even though many states have decriminalized and even legalized marijuana, in the state of Tennessee, it is still considered an illegal substance. Though, there is legislation that could change that very soon. Residents of Tennessee and visitors should be familiar with the more common drug charges in the state.

Tennessee’s Penalties for Simple Possession of a Controlled Substance

Simple possession refers to the quantity of drugs in your possession and whether they were consistent with personal use rather than intent to distribute. While the phrase “simple possession” is a misdemeanor and does not sound like it would be a heavily weighted charge, Tennessee Code 39-17-418 tells us that a conviction could mean up to a year in jail. If convicted of simple possession, you will face a fine of $2,500.

Larger quantities of controlled substances mean stiffer penalties because it is assumed that you intend to sell the drugs.

Possession of Marijuana in Tennessee

A charge of simple possession is a Class A Misdemeanor where the defendant was in possession of up to ½ an ounce.

Sale or Possession of a Controlled Substance With Intent in Tennessee

If convicted of possession with intent, the charge is a severe one. It will be considered a felony punishable with a sentence of between one and 30+ years in state prison. This is a very life-altering charge.

The following are charges you may face if arrested for the crime of sale or possession of a controlled substance with intent:

  • ½ ounce to ten pounds is considered a Class E Felony that carries a sentence of between 1 and 6 years.
  • Ten pounds to 70 pounds constitutes a Class D Felony which has a penalty of 2 to 12 years in prison.
  • Seventy pounds to 300 pounds is a Class C Felony. This charge carries with it a sentence of 3 to 15 years in prison if convicted.
  • 300+ pounds is considered a Class B felony. This severe charge may sentence the accused between 8 and 30 years if convicted.

How Drug Convictions Can Affect Your Future

Drug convictions impact your life far after the fines are paid, and the sentences are served. Criminal charges can make it difficult to secure housing, can complicate custody matters, can make finding employment difficult, and can rob you of educational opportunities. If you are at risk of being convicted for a drug-related charge, it is crucial that you seek legal counsel immediately.

The criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Christopher Eads can help you to mount a strong defense and hopefully minimize the loss of privileges and the fines you may incur while protecting your freedom. Regardless of the charges, we are in your corner and are ready to aid you in mounting a robust defense. Contact us today.