If a Florida police officer stopped and arrested you for possession of a controlled substance, it means that he or she recognizes you did not intend to distribute, sell or manufacture the substance. Rather, it was obvious to the arresting officer you intended to use the drug for personal use. That said, does that mean you are off the hook? Not by a long shot.
According to FindLaw, Florida views possession of most controlled substances, save for medical marijuana, as felony crimes. Recently (as of January 2017), the state added salts and “Spice” to the list of banned substances. Simple possession of marijuana, which is possession of less than 20 grams of the drug, is a first-degree misdemeanor offense.
If an officer stops you with up to 20 grams of marijuana and without a doctor’s note citing your need for the substance, the state may charge you with a first-degree misdemeanor. A conviction may result in up to one year in jail, court costs, mandatory treatment and up to one year of home detention.
If an officer stops you with more than 20 grams of marijuana (without a doctor’s recommendation), up to 10 grams or ecstasy, up to 4 grams of heroin, up to one gram of LSD or up to 28 grams of cocaine, the state may charge you with a third-degree felony. If convicted of a third-degree felony, you may go to jail for up to five years.
If you have more than 25 pounds of marijuana, 10 grams of ecstasy, 4 grams of heroin, one gram of LSD or 28 grams of cocaine on you at the time of arrest, the state may charge you with a first-degree felony. If the state convicts you of a first-degree felony, it may sentence you to a prison term of up to 30 years and charge you a fine of up to $250,000. Mandatory minimums apply in first-degree felony cases.
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