What Are the Penalties for Possession of Marijuana in Ohio?

In Ohio, a person is prohibited from knowingly obtaining, possessing, or using a controlled substance.  A controlled substance includes marijuana.  Our Columbus criminal defense attorneys have successfully defended numerous cases where our clients have been charged with the possession of marijuana, and have obtained dismissals and not guilty verdicts in many of those cases.  However, most people charged with possession of marijuana initially want to know what penalties they are potentially facing in the event of a conviction.

Jail Time and Fines

In Ohio, possession of less than 100 grams of marijuana is a minor misdemeanor, punishable by a fine up to $150.00, plus court costs.  No jail time can be imposed.  However, any person charged with a misdemeanor marijuana charge, needs to be aware of the collateral consequences of such a conviction.

Possession of 100 or more, but less than 200 grams of marijuana is a 4th degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a fine not to exceed $250.00, plus court costs.

Possession of 200 or more, but less than 1,000 grams (1 kilogram) of marijuana is a 5th degree felony, punishable by up to 12 months in prison, and a fine not to exceed $2,500.00, plus court costs.

Possession of 1,000 grams or more, but less than 5,000 grams (5 kilograms) of marijuana is 3rd degree felony, punishable by a maximum of 36 months in prison, and a fine not to exceed $10,000.00, plus court costs.  (Note:  Effective September 30, 2011, the maximum penalty for a such a possession charged was reduced from a definite term of 5 years in prison to 36 months in prison).

Possession of 5,000 grams or more, but less than 20,000 grams (20 kilograms) of marijuana is a 3rd degree felony, punishable by a maximum of 36 months in prison, but carries with it a presumption in favor of prison.  It also carries a fine not to exceed $10,000.00, plus court costs.

Possession of 20,000 grams or more, but less than 40,000 grams (40 kilograms) of marijuana is a 2nd degree felony, punishable by a maximum of 8 years in prison, but carries with it a mandatory prison term of not less than 5 years.  It also carries a fine not to exceed $15,000.00, plus court costs.

Possession of 40,000 grams (40 kilograms) or more of marijuana is a 2nd degree felony, punishable by a maximum of 8 years in prison, but carries with it a mandatory prison term of the full 8 years in prison.  It also carries a fine not to exceed $15,000.00, plus court costs.

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