Drug Possession Attorneys in Waco, TX
Advocating for Your Interests in Criminal Proceedings
Drug crimes are a serious matter that state governments strictly enforce with harsh consequences. In the past, the social stigma associated with drug use was extremely severe. Over time, the public has slightly warmed to the unique circumstances that surround many drug use cases. However, the legal ramifications with a drug possession conviction still have the potential to change a person’s life drastically.
If you have been charged with a drug possession offense, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced drug possession lawyer in Waco. At Blanchard & Thomas, you can find an experienced criminal defense team of attorneys who will zealously advocate for your legal rights and interests.
To learn more about the legal services we provide, call us at (866) 251-0624.
Texas Drug Possession Laws
Under Texas law, it is a crime to knowingly possess a dangerous drug or controlled substance. The legal framework for drug crimes is comprehensive, often involving provisions of the Texas Health & Safety Code, in addition to provisions of the Texas Penal Code. The penalty for possession of a dangerous drug or controlled substance is divided into different categories, depending on the amount of the substance the defendant had in their possession.
Penalty Group 1 & 2
Texas Family Code §§ 481.102-403 provides a comprehensive list of substances that are punishable under Penalty Group 1 and Penalty Group 2 if the defendant knowingly possessed one of them. Possession under this group is punishable as a felony.
Penalty Group 1 drugs include opiates, opium derivatives, and methamphetamines. Examples of Penalty Group 2 drugs are hallucinogens and MDMA (also known as “ecstasy” or “molly.”)
Penalties for possession of substances listed in Groups 1 & 2 are:
- State Jail Felony: Less than 1 gram.
- Third-Degree Felony: Between 1 and 4 grams.
- Second-Degree Felony: Between 4 and 200 grams.
- First-Degree Felony: Between 200 and 400 grams
If the defendant had 400 grams or more of a Penalty Group 1 or 2 substance, they can face life in prison and up to $100,000 in criminal fines.
Penalty Group 3 & 4
Texas Family Code § 481.104 prohibits the possession of various substances that have a potential for abuse or used in the manufacturing process of certain substances. These Penalty Group 3 drugs include certain drugs that are considered “stimulants” and “depressants” regarding their effect on the central nervous system.
Under, Texas Family Code § 481.105 it is a crime to possess a Penalty Group 4 substance, which consists of a “compound, mixture, or preparation” containing narcotic drugs such as codeine in certain amounts measured in milliliters per 100 grams.
The punishments for Penalty Group 3 & 4 drugs are organized as follows:
- Class A Misdemeanor: Less than 28 grams of a Penalty Group 3 substance.
- Class B Misdemeanor: Less than 28 grams of a Penalty Group 4 substance.
- Third-Degree Felony: Between 28 and 200 grams.
- Second-Degree Felony: Between 200 and 400 grams.
- Life in Prison: 400 grams or more. Alternatively, the prison term for possessing this much of a Penalty Group 3 substance is five to 99 years and up to $50,000 in criminal fines.
Defenses and Relief to Drug Possession Crimes
To secure a successful conviction of a drug possession offense, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly exercised care, custody, control, or management over a controlled substance with the knowledge that it was contraband. In many cases, there are arguments and strategies that serve as a complete defense against a conviction, or could lead to a reduced sentence.
At Blanchard & Thomas, we have experience with the following defenses:
- Mistake: The defendant reasonably and honestly believed that the substance was not contraband.
- No actual possession: The defendant did not actually exclusive care, control, or custody of the contraband.
- Coercion or duress: The defendant was forced to possess the substance under threat of imminent violence or harm.
Furthermore, the Texas Drug Court program is a possible option for defendants who suffer from addiction and substance abuse. The Drug Court program helps people receive much-needed rehabilitative treatment and therapy and can last from anywhere between one year to eighteen months. Successful completion of a pre-trial program can result in dropped charges.
Consult Blanchard & Thomas for Legal Advice
Depending on the circumstances of your case, a successful conviction for drug possession can turn your life upside down. Given the stakes involved in drug possession crimes, it is crucial for you to find effective legal representation to ensure the stigma associated with drugs does not compromise the judicial integrity of your trial. At Blanchard & Thomas, we are passionate about protecting the due process rights of criminal defendants.
We serve at the clients’ pleasure. If for any reason whatsoever the client decides he/she is better off with a different attorney or law firm, we will respectfully and professionally do whatever we can to get the new attorney or law firm up to speed and ready to handle the case. We vow to never object to a client’s request to seek alternative counsel, and we promise to return 100% of any unearned advance payments.
We play to win. While we cannot guarantee outcomes in any case, we always do our best to see that our clients come out on top. We want our clients to know without question that their success matters to us more than their payments.
We play hard, we play fast, and we stick to the game plan. We work with every client to develop a strategy most likely to bring about their success. We work hard to ensure the strategy gives our client every advantage possible and their very best chance at success. We then implement that strategy as quickly and efficiently as possible.
We make a commitment to communication. We begin and end many of our days communicating with clients. Our clients can count on us to return phone calls and/or e-mail within 24 hours except in emergencies or during announced absences from the office. We want our clients to always know what we know and vice-versa, and overcome them.
While the attorney client relationship may not always result in friendship, we believe it should always result in mutual respect. We zealously advocate on our clients’ behalf whether we agree with their choices or not. We do not judge our client’s choices; we simply attempt to help them learn from them, live with them, and overcome them.
We build our relationships upon a foundation of total honesty. Absolute honesty allows the client and the attorney to develop trust that will be absolutely critical to success in and out of the courtroom.