Is possession of marijuana really a felony?!
Because it’s totally legal in California… and Nevada… and we have medical marijuana in Arizona…
Yes. Possession of Marijuana for personal use is a felony offense in Arizona.
Arizona Revised Statutes § 13-3405 provides that a person shall not knowingly possess or use marijuana, and that violating the statute is a felony.
But what kind of felony? That depends on how much marijuana you are possessing. Possession of less than two pounds of marijuana is a class six felony. Possession of between two and four pounds of marijuana is a class five felony. Possession of more than four pounds of marijuana is a class four felony.
Although possession of marijuana is an offense covered by Arizona’s Proposition 200, which mandates probation for most first and second time offenses with some exceptions, having a felony conviction carries with serious collateral consequences including:
· - Loss of civil rights
· - Loss of employment
· - Loss of housing
The good news, at least for those charged with possessing less than two pounds of marijuana, is that the Court may designate the offense a misdemeanor. Pursuant to Arizona Revised Statutes § 13-604, if you do not have two or more prior felony convictions, the Court may designate the offense a misdemeanor at the time that judgment is entered, or it may leave the offense undesignated. An undesignated offense is one where the Court holds off on designating the offense a felony or misdemeanor until the time that probation is over.
The other bit of good news is that these cases can be beat. There are ways to challenge whether you possessed the marijuana. There are ways to challenge the methods which the police used to get evidence against you. And there are defenses involving the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act.
It can come as a shock that simple Possession of Marijuana for personal use is a felony in Arizona. It’s important to know what you’re facing and what your options are when you face a potential felony on your record. Speak with an attorney who is experienced and knowledgeable of Arizona’s Possession of Marijuana laws to avoid making simple possession into a simple pain.
The attorneys at Rosenstein Law Group have significant knowledge and experience with possession of Marijuana offenses and will fight aggressively to prevent a marijuana charge from impacting your civil rights and your future. Call to schedule a consultation to find the best way to defend your self-defense case.