Drug Paraphernalia Possession Defense
Ohio Paraphernalia Laws
Drug paraphernalia is any equipment used to create or manufacture drugs. When people hear the term “drug paraphernalia,” they often think of something like a pipe or bong used to smoke marijuana. While these items do fit the statute Illegal Use or Possession of Drug Paraphernalia (ORC 2925.14) under Ohio law, it is actually much broader and includes a vast assortment of materials that may be used to manufacture, package, ingest, cultivate, cut, or otherwise use, possess, or sell drugs.
Penalties depend on the specific nature of the offense. If you are convicted of possessing drug paraphernalia in Cleveland, you face up to 30 days in jail. If you are convicted of dealing drug paraphernalia in Cleveland, you could go to jail for 90 days. If the charge is dealing drug paraphernalia to a minor, your sentence could stretch up to six months.
Possessing Drug Abuse Instruments in Ohio
According to Ohio's law, possessing drug abuse instruments (ORC 2925.12) is a second degree misdemeanor on a first conviction, which can lead to a 90 day sentence. A second conviction makes it a misdemeanor of the first degree, with a sentence of up to six months. You’ll also lose your driver’s license for between six months and five years.
Drug abuse instruments may include:
- Hypodermic needles
- Rolling papers
- Plastic bags
It is important to never mistake the word “misdemeanor” for “not a serious crime.” Not only do you face jail time if convicted, but a conviction for a “minor” charge today can lead to much more serious problems if you’re arrested in the future.
Illegal Use or Possession of Marijuana Drug Paraphernalia (O.R.C. 2925.141)
While possession of drug paraphernalia in general is a crime, there is a special category of criminal offense for paraphernalia used for the consumption of marijuana. Under the statute, it is illegal for people in Cleveland to knowingly use, or possess with purpose to use, any equipment, product, or material that the person uses, intends to use, or is designed to be used to introduce marijuana into the human body.
Like other paraphernalia charges, ORC 2925.141 can be used to cover a broad collection of items:
- Rolling papers
- Containers for packaging
- Tools used to prepare marijuana for consumption
The illegal use or possession of marijuana drug paraphernalia is a fourth degree misdemeanor that is punishable by a maximum fine of $150 and a driver’s license suspension of six months to five years. The charge is more serious when the person is convicted of illegal use or possession of marihuana (marijuana) drug paraphernalia, which can be a second or first degree misdemeanor and include jail time.
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