Our Cleveland drug possession lawyers understand Ohio drug crime laws and put over 70 years of combined experience in your corner.
Ohio Revised Code § 2925.11 makes it illegal to “knowingly obtain, possess, or use a controlled substance.” There are two types of possession that the prosecutors must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt: actual possession infers that the alleged offender had physical control of the substance.
Constructive possession, which is harder to prove, means that the defendant not only had access to the controlled drugs but knew about them, too. Sentencing for these crimes is complicated and relies on the type and quantity of the controlled substance involved.
Penalties for Possession of a Controlled Substance in OH
Ohio Revised Code § 2925.11 makes it illegal to “knowingly obtain, possess, or use a controlled substance.”
To determine the possible penalties for possession of a controlled substance, you need to know:
- What drug you are charged with possessing
- How much drug you possessed
- Where you possessed these drugs
The law treats the possession of marijuana more leniently than possession of cocaine or heroin. For instance, if you are arrested with 100 grams of cocaine, you face 3 to 11 years in prison and $20,000 in fines. However, if you are arrested with 100 grams of marijuana, you face a maximum of 6 months in jail.
Heroin Possession Charges & Penalties
In Ohio, heroin possession or trafficking may result in fines of thousands of dollars and even up to 10+ years in prison. Heroin is considered a Schedule I drug and charges are based on the amount in possession.
These charges include:
- <1 gram: 5th-degree felony with 6-12 month prison sentence.
- 1-4 grams: 4th-degree felony and 6-18 month prison sentence.
- 5-9 grams: 3rd-degree felony and 9-month – 3-year prison sentence.
- 10-49 grams: 2nd-degree felony and 2-8 year prison sentence.
- 50-249 grams: 1st-degree felony and 3-10 year prison sentence.
- >250 grams: major drug offense (MDO) and 11-year mandatory prison sentence.
Cocaine Possession Charges & Penalties
In Ohio, cocaine charges and penalties are based on the amount in possession or sold. Cocaine is a Schedule II drug. The charges for cocaine possession range from a 1st-degree to 5th-degree felony.
The amounts and penalties for cocaine possession include:
- <5 grams: 5th-degree felony; fines up to $2,500 and 6-12 months in jail.
- 5-9 grams: 4th-degree felony; fines up to $5,000 and 6 months in jail to 18 months in prison.
- 10-19 grams: 3rd-degree felony; fines up to $10,000 and 9 months in jail to 36 months in prison.
- 20-27 grams: 2nd-degree felony; fines up to $15,000 and 2-8 years in prison.
- 27-99 grams: 1st-degree felony; fines up to $20,000 and 3-11 years in prison.
- >100 grams: 1st-degree felony; fines up to $20,000 and 11 years in prison.
Ohio Fentanyl Penalties
In Ohio, fentanyl is a Schedule II controlled substance and is charged by “bulk amount” found in possession. The “bulk amount” refers to either: (1) > 10 grams; or (2) > 25 doses of the controlled substance.
Possession of fentanyl in Ohio may result in the following penalties:
- <a bulk amount: 5th-degree felony; 6-12 months in prison and a fine of $2,5000.
- >a bulk amount & <5x bulk amount: 3rd degree felony; 9 months-5 years in prison and fines up to $10,000.
- 5x-50x bulk amount: 2nd-degree felony; mandatory minimum of 2 years in prison and fines up to $15,000.
- 50x-100x bulk amount: 1st-degree felony; mandatory minimum of 3 years in prison and fines up to $20,000.
- >100x bulk amount: 1st degree felony; mandatory minimum of 11 years in prison; major drug offender (MDO).
Penalties for Methamphetamine Possession
In Ohio, meth possession is a felony drug crime and will result in fines and jail time.
The penalties for these crimes are based on the amount in possession.
- <3 grams: 5th-degree felony; 6-12 months in jail and up to $2,500 in fines.
- 3-15 grams: 3rd-degree felony; possible 9-36 months in jail and up to $10,000 in fines.
- 15-150 grams: 2nd-degree felony; 2-8 years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines.
- 150-300 grams: 1st-degree felony; 3-11 years in prison and up to $20,000 in fines.
- >300 grams: 1st-degree felony; 11 years in prison, up to $20,000 in fines, major drug offender (MDO).
Call the Best Cleveland Drug Possession Lawyers!
There are numerous ways to defend these cases as each case is unique. At a bare minimum, each case needs to have what is called a suppression hearing.
A suppression hearing is where the attorney challenges:
- The reason for your arrest
- The reason for any search
- The science behind the drug analysis
- The conclusions regarding the amount of the drug
- Anything else that is relevant to the case
It is important in defending these cases to know your goal. Are you a college student? You risk losing all of your financial aid. Are you a professional? You have professional licensing issues that you need to avoid. Everyone has something to lose if these cases are not handled the right way.
Call our Cleveland drug possession attorneys at 440-471-7784. Ask to speak to one of our lawyers personally about the facts of your case. The call is completely confidential and without any obligation. If we agree to take on your case, our team of ex-prosecutors will go to work fighting for you.
If you have been charged with the possession of a controlled substance under O.R.C. 2925.11, you face some serious penalties. Our Cleveland criminal defense attorneys at Patituce & Associates have over 70 years of combined experience.