It seems like every news station focuses on fentanyl and the number of individuals who have died from overdosing or poisoning. In addition, recent years have led to many states legalizing marijuana and some even legalizing deadlier drugs.
Ohio has not legalized marijuana or any other illicit drugs. Therefore, it is important to understand the general sentences for drug crimes in Ohio.
In Ohio, the penalty for a minor misdemeanor is typically a $150 fine. This includes possession of fewer than 100 grams of marijuana. First-degree misdemeanor offenses have fines of up to $1,000 and 180 days, while second-, third- and fourth-degree misdemeanors have fines and sentences of $750 and 90 days, $500 and 60 days and $250 and 30 days in jail, respectively.
Someone convicted of a fifth-degree felony may receive six to 12 months in prison and a $2,500 fine. Fourth-degree felonies may result in six to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine. Third-, second- and first-degree felonies have prison sentences of one to three years, two to eight years and three to 11 years and fines of $10,000, $15,000 and $20,000, respectively.
The seriousness of the crime, e.g., the schedule the drug falls on and the amount in possession, as well as the number of previous convictions can impact the jail or prison sentence and fine amount. The judge treats each case individually. However, a judge may also abbreviate a sentence based on several factors, including provocation or duress.
Ohio’s sentencing guidelines are subject to the judge’s consideration. However, working with a reputable attorney can provide the best defense and reduce the charges when a conviction occurs.