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Just how serious does Arkansas treat the crime of drug possession? - III

In today's post, our blog will conclude its ongoing discussion of how those arrested for seemingly minor drug crimes here in Arkansas such as possession of a controlled dangerous substance for personal use must not underestimate the severity of the ensuing criminal charges.

Specifically, we'll spend some time exploring how the state's draconian penalties for possession of a controlled substance for personal use extend even to those substances considered less dangerous, meaning they are further down on its list of controlled dangerous substances.

What are the penalties for possession of a schedule III CDS?

Schedule III CDS' have accepted medical uses, as well as a potential for abuse that is lower than their schedule I or schedule II counterparts. Indeed, abuse typically results in high psychological dependence, but moderate to low physical dependence. By way of example, consider pentobarbital.

Possession of 200 grams or more, but less than 400 grams of a schedule III CDS is a Class B felony, while possession of 28 grams or more, but less than 200 grams, is a Class C felony. In addition, possession of two grams or more, but less than 28 grams of a schedule III CDS is charged as a Class D felony, and possession of less than two grams is a Class A misdemeanor.  

What are the penalties for possession of a schedule VI CDS?

Schedule VI CDS' have no accepted medical uses, a high potential for abuse, and high levels of psychological and physical dependence in the event of abuse. Indeed, they are viewed as unsafe even under medical supervision and presenting a "definite risk to public health." Oddly enough, marijuana is classified as a schedule VI CDS.

Possession of 25 pounds or more, but less than 100 pounds of a schedule VI CDS is a Class B felony, while possession of ten pounds or more, but less than 25 pounds, is a Class C felony. Furthermore, possession of four ounces or more, but less than 10 pounds of a schedule VI CDS is charged as a Class D felony, and possession of one ounce or more, but less than four ounces is also a Class D felony (if the person has two prior convictions for possession of schedule VI CDS'). Finally, possession of less than four ounces is Class A misdemeanor.  

What sorts of penalties could result from a conviction on these charges?

Arkansas law breaks down punishment for the aforementioned charges as follows:

  • Class A felonies: Anywhere from six to 30 years in prison and a maximum fine of $15,000
  • Class B felonies: Anywhere from five to 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $15,000
  • Class C felonies: Punishable by anywhere from three to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000
  • Class D felonies: Punishable by as much as six years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000
  • Class A misdemeanors: Punishable by up to one year in prison and a maximum fine of $2,500

As demonstrated by the foregoing discussion, it's imperative to consider speaking with an skilled legal professional as soon as possible if you've been charged with any sort of drug-related offense.

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