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The Crucial Differences Between Misdemeanor and Felony Drug Charges in Texas

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In Texas, drug charges at any level can result in harsh penalties and long-lasting consequences that can impact the rest of your life. Still, whether you get charged with a misdemeanor or felony greatly influences your sentencing and the long-term implications of the offense. Understanding the distinctions between these is crucial to navigating your legal battle.

Turnbull Legal Group explores the crucial differences between misdemeanor and felony drug charges in the Lone Star State to empower you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions when facing drug charges in Texas.

What is a Misdemeanor Drug Charge?

In Texas, misdemeanors represent a category of charges with varying degrees of severity. Misdemeanor drug charges typically involve lesser quantities of controlled substances or offenses deemed less serious by the legal system.

Misdemeanor Classification Criteria

Misdemeanor drug charges are often distinguished by factors such as the type and quantity of the controlled substance involved, the intent of the individual, and whether there are previous convictions.

Examples of Misdemeanor Drug Charges

Common examples of misdemeanor drug charges include possession of a small amount of marijuana for personal use, drug paraphernalia offenses, or being found with a limited quantity of certain prescription medications without a valid prescription.

What is a Felony Drug Charge?

Felony charges are far more serious and carry heightened legal consequences and long-term implications.

Felony Classification Criteria

Felony drug charges typically involve more substantial quantities of controlled substances, aggravating factors, or the intent to distribute or manufacture illicit substances. Previous criminal history, especially prior drug convictions, can also elevate a charge to a felony.

Examples of Felony Drug Offenses

Felony drug charges encompass a broad spectrum of offenses, including possession of significant amounts of controlled substances, drug trafficking, manufacturing illicit substances, and distributing drugs within specific zones such as schools or parks.

Penalties and Consequences for a Misdemeanor Versus Felony Drug Charge

The biggest difference between a misdemeanor and a felony drug charge is typically the punishment. Though both charges will leave offenders with a permanent criminal record, a felony record may result in losing some civil rights and difficulty finding a job or housing.

A felony drug charge conviction can result in 2-99 years in state jail or prison and up to a $10,000 fine.

On the other hand, some misdemeanor charges may result in no jail time. Or, you could be facing up to a year in jail and thousands of dollars in fines for a Class A misdemeanor.

No matter the charges you’re facing, consulting with an attorney as soon as possible is crucial. Remember, the decisions you make today will impact you tomorrow. With the proper legal counsel, you can better navigate the complexities of Texas drug laws and have a better chance to improve the outcome of your case.

If you find yourself confronting the legal aftermath of a drug charge, don’t face it alone. Contact Turnbull Legal Group for a free private and confidential consultation. Attorney Turnbull is a former Chief District Court Judge and Chief Prosecutor proudly serving Harris County, Montgomery County, Brazos County, and Galveston County residents.

Texas Criminal Law Attorney - Turnbull Legal Group
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