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Felony Drug Possession

Felony drug possession charges in Ohio is a very serious criminal offense on both the state and federal level. If you are convicted of felony drug possession, you will face serious consequences which will entail lengthy prison time, hefty fines and your driver’s license may be suspended.

Felony drug possession falls under the possession of controlled substances definition of the Ohio Revised Code (ORC 2925.11). The law states that possession of controlled substances is knowingly obtaining, possessing, or using a controlled substance. Illegal controlled substances in Ohio include marijuana, cocaine, LSD, heroin, and methamphetamines.

Felony Drug Possession Penalties

Ohio felony drug possession penalty breakdown

  • Schedule I or II substances
    less than the bulk amount – fifth degree felony with at least 6 months in jail and fines up to $2,500
  • Schedule III, IV, or V substances
    the bulk amount but less than 5 times the bulk amount – third degree felony with at least 9 months in prison and up to $10,000 in fines

If you are convicted of felony drug possession, the penalties are dependant on the facts and circumstances of your particular case such as the amount of substance that you possessed, the type of substance, where the offense occurred, and whether the offense was aggravated.

Controlled substances in Ohio are categorized into bulk amounts. A bulk amount is defined according to the Ohio Revised Code (ORC 2925.01) as an amount equal to or exceeding 10 grams or 25 unit does of a compound, mixture, preparation or substance which is or contains any amount of a Schedule I opiate, opium derivative, or cocaine.

The following information serves as a guideline for charges and penalties based upon what schedule the substance was and the specific bulk amount involved.

Schedule I and II Controlled Substance Penalities

If you are convicted for possessing a schedule I or II controlled substance, this is considered an aggravated possession of controlled substances. The specific penalties will be based on the amount of the controlled substance that you possessed.

  • If you possess less than the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a fifth degree felony. This entails at least six months and up to a year in jail and fines up to $2,500.
  • If you possess the bulk amount but less than five times the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a third degree felony. This entails at least nine months and up to three years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
  • If you possess five times the bulk amount but less than 50 times the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a second degree felony. This entails at minimum two years and at most eight years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines.
  • If you possess 50 times the bulk about of a controlled substance but less than 100 times the bulk, amount, you will face a first degree felony. This entails at minimum three years and up to 11 years in prison and fines up to $20,000.
  • If you possess 100 times or more than the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a first degree felony. This entails at minimum 11 years in prison and up to $20,000 in fines.

Schedule III, IV and V Controlled Substance Penalities

If you are convicted of possessing a schedule III, IV or V controlled substance, this is considered possession of a controlled substance. The specific penalties will be based on the amount of controlled substance that you possessed.

  • If you possess less than the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a first degree misdemeanor. This entails a maximum sentence of up to 60 days in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. For second, third and subsequent offenses, you will face a fifth degree felony. This entails at minimum six and up to a year in prison and up to $2,500 in fines.
  • If you possess the bulk amount but less than 5 times the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a fourth degree felony. This entails at minimum six months and up to 18 months in prison and up to $5,000 in fines.
  • If you possess five times the bulk amount but less than 50 times the bulk amount of a controlled substance you will face a third degree felony. This entails at minimum 9 months in jail and at most 3 years prison in addition to fines up to $10,000.
  • If you possess at least 50 times the bulk amount of a controlled substance, you will face a second degree felony. This entails at minimum two years and up to eight years in prison in addition to fines up to $15,000.

Due to the fact that Ohio drug laws are complicated, you should always consult with a knowledgeable Cincinnati Criminal Defense attorney who will best be able to provide you proper counsel regarding the specific facts and circumstances of your case.

In addition to prison time and hefty fines, a felony drug possession conviction will have a negative impact on other areas of your life as well. You may face difficulty keeping or finding a job, furthering your education, difficulty financially, maintaining professional licensures and having custody of your children.

If you are convicted of felony drug possession, you will also face a possible driver’s license suspension.

Defending Possession of Controlled Substance Offenses

Regardless of what the facts and circumstances of your case are, there are defenses that can be raised on your behalf. Cincinnati felony drug possession lawyer Brad Groene will take the time to examine what legal strategies are most appropriate in defending your case.

Perhaps there is an explanation for why you were in possession of drugs – the drugs were not yours and / or someone placed them in your belongings without your consent or knowledge. Perhaps there is a different reason as to why you had possession of drugs; you have a substance abuse problem or are going through a difficult period in your life. You may be a medical marijuana patient. Regardless what happened in your case, there are ways of mitigating these factors and potentially receiving a lesser sentence.

The following are a list of factors that are taken into consideration in determining whether there were any errors made in your case:

  • Whether there were any search warrants issued without probable cause;
  • Whether an illegal search was conducted;
  • Whether your Fourth Amendment rights were violated;
  • Whether illegal forms of surveillance were involved;
  • Whether your Miranda Rights were read in their entirety;
  • Whether any evidence was illegally obtained;
  • Whether lab results and analysis were handled properly.

If you are facing your first conviction of felony drug possession in Ohio, the court may be more lenient with your sentence. A clean criminal record can will undoubtedly work to your advantage if you are convicted. The Cincinnati Criminal Defense Attorneys will do everything in their power to argue for a reduction in your charges and minimizing your penalties.

Every day in Ohio, hundreds of individuals are charged with felony drug possession. Although each case is different, it is imperative that you obtain an experienced, knowledgeable and compassionate attorney who will fight for your legal rights and best interest. Cincinnati felony drug possession lawyer Brad Groene has successfully defended hundreds of individuals charged with felony drug possession. Their knowledge, experience and compassion for your case will help you receive the justice you deserve.

Facing Charges? Call a Cincinnati Felony Drug Possession Lawyer Today.

Ohio drug laws are incredibly complex, which is why fighting distribution charges on your own can quickly get you into real trouble. If you are arrested for distribution of amphetamines, your best defense is the help of an experienced Cincinnati drug lawyer. Your Cincinnati drug crime attorney can help create the best defense strategy for your unique case and ensure that you have the best outcome possible.

At Luftman, Heck, and Associates, our Cincinnati drug lawyers have years of experience fighting these kinds of charges, and we are prepared to do everything we can to represent your best interests. With our team headed by Brad Groene on your side, you will have the best chance to fight the charges successfully. We are available for our clients 24/7, so call our offices right now at to set up a free consultation on your case.

Contact us today!