Possession of a Controlled Substance

Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.002(38) defines possession as “actual care, custody, control, or management.” A person who is accused of possession of any controlled substance in Texas can face criminal charges that may carry a variety of serious penalties.

Drug possession offenses account for a significant number of arrests in the Lone Star State, and convictions can lead to long-term hardships for alleged offenders concerning matters relating to employment or housing. Depending on the amount and type of controlled substance involved in these offenses, people could face either misdemeanor or felony charges.

Attorney for Controlled Substance Possession Arrests in Denton, TX

If you were arrested for alleged possession of any kind of illegal drug in Denton County, it is in your best interest to exercise your right to remain silent until you have legal representation. Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy aggressively defends clients accused of drugs or narcotics crimes in Lewisville, Little Elm, The Colony, Argyle, Flower Mound, Highland Village, and many surrounding areas of Denton County.

Denton criminal defense lawyers Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton will fight to help you achieve the most favorable outcome to your case, including possibly having the criminal charges reduced or dismissed. Call 940-222-8004 right now to take advantage of a free, confidential consultation that will let our attorneys provide a complete evaluation of your case.


Overview of Possession of a Controlled Substance in Denton County


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Possession of a Controlled Substance Charges in Texas

The Texas Controlled Substances Act establishes separate statutes for drug possession crimes for each Penalty Group. Possession of a controlled substance offenses are classified according to the type and amount of the drug that was allegedly possessed:

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 1 (Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.115)

Knowing or intentional possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1 is classified as follows, depending on the aggregate weight:

  • Less than one gram — State Jail Felony;
  • One gram or more but less than four grams Third Degree Felony;
  • Four grams or more but less than 200 grams Second Degree Felony; or
  • 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams First Degree Felony.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1 allegedly possessed is 400 grams or more, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of 10 years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 1-A (Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.1151)

Knowing possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1-A is classified as follows, based on the number of units:

  • Fewer than 20 units State Jail Felony;
  • 20 or more units but fewer than 80 units Third Degree Felony;
  • 80 or more units but fewer than 4,000 units Second Degree Felony; or
  • 4,000 units or more but fewer than 8,000 units First Degree Felony.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1-A allegedly possessed is 8,000 or more units, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of 15 years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 2, Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.116

Knowing or intentional possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 2 is classified as follows, depending on the aggregate weight:

  • Less than one gram — State Jail Felony;
  • One gram or more but less than four grams Third Degree Felony; or
  • Four grams or more but less than 400 grams Second Degree Felony.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 2 allegedly possessed is 400 grams or more, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of five years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 2-A, Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.1161

Knowing possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 2-A is classified as follows, based on the aggregate weight:

  • Less than two ounces Class B Misdemeanor;
  • Two ounces or more but less than four ounces — Class A Misdemeanor;
  • Four ounces or more but less than five pounds — State Jail Felony;
  • Five pounds or more but less than 50 pounds Third Degree Felony; or
  • 50 pounds or more but less than 2,000 pounds Second Degree Felony.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 2-A allegedly possessed is more than 2,000 pounds, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of five years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 3, Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.117

Knowing or intentional possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 3 is classified as follows, depending on the aggregate weight:

  • Less than 28 grams Class A Misdemeanor;
  • 28 grams or more but less than 200 grams Third Degree Felony; or
  • 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams Second Degree Felony.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 3 allegedly possessed is 400 grams or more, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of five years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group 4, Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.118

Knowing possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 4 is classified as follows, based on the aggregate weight:

  • Class B Misdemeanor — Less than 28 grams;
  • Third Degree Felony — 28 grams or more but less than 200 grams; or
  • Second Degree Felony — 200 grams or more but less than 400 grams.

If the amount of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 4 allegedly possessed is 400 grams or more, the offense is considered an enhanced first-degree felony punishable by a minimum of five years up to 99 years or life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.


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Possession of a Controlled Substance Penalties in Denton County

When individuals are convicted of any drug or controlled substance crime in Texas, they can have their driver’s licenses suspended for 180 days and be required to complete a 15-hour class in an authorized Drug Education Program. Convictions can also result in one of the following sentences, depending on the classification of the alleged possession offense:

  • Class B Misdemeanor — Up to 180 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,000;
  • Class A Misdemeanor — Up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $4,000;
  • State Jail Felony — Up to two years in state jail and/or a fine of up to $10,000;
  • Third Degree Felony — Up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000;
  • Second Degree Felony — Up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000; and
  • First Degree Felony — Life or up to 99 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.

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Texas Resources for Possession of a Controlled Substance

Drugs and Addiction | Denton County, Texas — Visit this section of the Denton County website to learn more about illegal drugs and addiction. You can find information about how addiction is defined, warning signs of addiction, and myths about addiction. You can also find descriptions of illegal drugs as well as information about the dangers of mixing drugs.

Texas Controlled Substances Act — View the full text of the state laws relating to illegal drugs in Texas. You can read about definitions, drug schedules, and different offenses. You can also find information relating to forfeiture and administrative penalties.


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Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy | Denton Possession of a Controlled Substance Defense Lawyer

Were you arrested in Denton County for any kind of alleged drug possession crime? You should not make any kind of statement to authorities without legal counsel. Contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy as soon as possible.

Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton are experienced criminal defense attorneys in Denton who represent individuals in communities all over Denton County, including Highland Village, Flower Mound, Argyle, The Colony, Little Elm, Lewisville, and many others. You can have our lawyers review your case and discuss all of your legal options when you call 940-222-8004 or fill out an online contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.


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