Harris County Misdemeanor Marijuana Policy – Do you qualify?

The long awaited change has come to Harris County!

If law enforcement finds you in possession of less than 4 ounces of marijuana, you will now be given the option to take a 4-hour class on cognitive decision making instead of going to jail. The class costs $150.

The marijuana will be seized and logged into evidence, and if you do not complete the class, the charges will be filed as usual.

LIMITATIONS to this new policy that YOU SHOULD KNOW

Some important things to know about this program:

  • It only applies to people found with Marijuana in Harris County under four (4) ounces.
  • You must be over the age of 17 to qualify for the program
  • You must have a state issued ID, on your person that you can present to the police at the time you are detained.
  • It only applies to those caught with Marijuana that are not engaged in any other criminal activity.  This means if you are being charged with any other offense besides a violation of the transportation code (speeding, etc.) you will STILL be charged with the Marijuana, and the other offense.  So if you are charged with DWI, then you will still be charged with the pot too.
  • If you are in possession of a firearm without a license, you may still be charged with the possession of marijuana – although there is some ambiguity in the policy in this regard.
  • It does not apply to you if you are currently on probation or parole.  What this means is that if you are currently on probation for any offense, or you are on parole, and you are found in possession of Marijuana in Harris County, charges will be filed.
  • If you are on bond for another criminal offense, you will still be charged with possession of marijuana.
  • If there is “sufficient credible evidence” showing you to be engaged in the sale or delivery of marijuana, you will still be charged with the Marijuana.  This means if they find you in possession of scales or have your marijuana broken up into multiple baggies, you are very likely to still be charged.
  • The policy does not apply to those found in possession of marijuana in a “drug free zone,” like a school.
  • The policy does not apply to those found in possession of marijuana in a correctional facility.
  • YOU CANNOT BE FOUND IN POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA MORE THAN EVERY 90 DAYS.  If you are found in possession of marijuana within this window, you will still be charged with the new possession offense.

So if you are found in possession of  Marijuana in Harris County, and meet all of these conditions, you can avoid even having the charges filed!  All you have to do is take a drug class within 90-days and they will not even file the charges!  How great is that!

CHARGED WITH POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA?

CALL LEGRANDE LAW

FREE consultations!

281-684-3500

http://www.HoustonDrugAttorney.net

DA Candidate Kim Ogg: No Arrest for Marijuana

Kim Ogg proposes something bold for Harris County, issue a ticket and enforce community service, instead of arresting and filling the jails with people charged with possession of small amounts of marijuana.  Ogg is the Democratic candidate for Harris County District Attorney, and this proposal is a new direction for any candidate to go in regarding marijuana law.

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It makes sense, right?  With thousands of people arrested for possession of small amounts of marijuana in Houston every year, this would reduce the overcrowding in the jails, making roomtexas-hemp-flag2 texas-hemp-flag2for the more serious offenders.  Not to mention, it would stop criminalizing a crime that is only malum prohibidum (only because of a prohibition), not malum in se (wrong in of itself).

Ogg also noted that in a time when budgets for the County are tight and the Economy is shaky, it would save as much as 10 million dollars a year to be used on other things.  Is it really an intelligent use of our resources to send it locking up people for doing something in this state that someone and other states can now do with impunity (see Colorado and Washington and recreational use legalization)?  Ogg thinks not.

Now for some statistics: in 2013, more than 12,000 people in Harris County were charged in with marijuana possession of less than 4 ounces.  On average these “criminals” in possession of the demon weed were put behind bars for an average of five days.

The cost to taxpayers? $4.4 million a year.

Kim Ogg’s plan (if she is elected this November) would be to divert those suspected of misdemeanor possession into alternative punishments that would include a citation, being required to appear in court (like a traffic ticket), and being given two days of community service work, like cleaning up litter.   The icing on the cake?  If successfully completed, offenders would not have a conviction on their record.

“This is the future of marijuana prosecution in Harris County,” she said “Our tagline is ‘No jail, no bail, no permanent record, if you earn it.'”

She said the entire workforce could be used for “Clean and Green,” a program in which volunteers clean up garbage in the area’s bayous.

I am a card carrying libertarian, so I try not to get caught up in the political fray (mainly because I think both sides have fatal flaws to their positions).  BUT, this is very promising, and I sincerely hope that Ogg is elected this November.  It’s about time someone made marijuana law more reasonable in Houston.

Arrested for Possession of Marijuana?

Arrested for Driving under the influence of drugs?

If you’ve been accused of any offense involving Marijuana (including possession of Marijuana) or any drug crime,  contact attorney Tristan LeGrande by calling 281-684-3500.

http://www.legrandelaw.com

http://www.houstondrugattorney.net

Houston Drug Attorney Tristan LeGrande

 

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Finally, a Texas candidate talking reasonably about Marijuana reform in Texas.