37+ Years of State and Federal Experience with 100+ Trials Before a Jury
Drug charges are a serious matter in Tennessee. The consequences could range from the misdemeanor level for possession to the felony level for sale or cultivation. However, whatever drug offense you’ve been charged with, you can rest assured that The Donahoe Firm can handle your defense. We have over 37 years of legal experience, including a high success rate with federal cases. We have also brought more than a hundred trials in front of a jury, so we have the experience and proven success you need to defend against your drug accusations.
For fearless drug defense from a reputable Jackson attorney, contact The Donahoe Firm today. Call (731) 207-8071 or schedule a free initial consultation online.
Controlled Substances Schedules in Tennessee
Tennessee classifies illegal controlled substances (CDS) into 7 different schedules based on the drug's level of dangerousness and risk of addiction (with Schedule I being the most dangerous and addictive). Some examples of substances in their respective schedules are:
- Schedule I – heroin, LSD, mushrooms
- Schedule II – cocaine, opium, morphine
- Schedule III – ketamine, anabolic steroids
- Schedule IV – Xanax, Valium
- Schedule V – medicines with limited amounts of codeine or opium
- Schedule VI – marijuana, THC, synthetic equivalents
- Schedule VII – butyl nitrite (poppers)
Penalties for Possession
Possessing controlled substances without a valid medical prescription could result in fines and incarceration. In general, first and second convictions are a charged as Class A misdemeanors punishable by a fine of up to $2,500 and/or up to 1 year in jail. Third and subsequent convictions are Class E felonies that carry a fine of up to $3,000 and 1-6 years in prison. A defendant will also be fined an additional $10,000 if the offense was committed in a drug-free zone (within 1,000 feet of a school, library, park, or recreational area). All convicted offenders will also be required to attend a drug offender school and/or perform community service at a drug or alcohol rehabilitation or treatment center.
Penalties for Sale and Cultivation
The penalties will increase significantly if the defendant is charge with cultivating or selling the controlled substance. Generally, the jail time and fines will depend on the type of the CDS in question:
- Schedule I CDS, and 0.5 grams or more of cocaine or methamphetamine – Class B felony punishable by $100,000 in fines and 8-30 years in prison
- Schedule II CDS, and 0.5 grams or less of cocaine or methamphetamine – Class C felony punishable by $100,000 in fines and 3-15 years in prison
- Schedule III and IV CDS – Class D felony punishable by up to $50,000 in fines and 2-12 years in prison
- Schedule V CDS – Class E felony punishable by up to $5,000 in fines and 1-6 years in prison
- Schedule VII CDS – Class E felony punishable by up to $1,000 in fines and 1-6 years in prison
It is a Class A felony to make or sell certain amounts of the following substances, punishable by up to $500,000 in fines and 15-60 years in prison:
- barbituric acid;
- amphetamine or methamphetamine;
The Schedule VI drug of marijuana is penalized based on the amounts being cultivated or sold:
- 0.5 ounces to 10 pounds – Class E felony punishable by $2,000-$5,000 in fines and/or 1-6 years in prison
- 10-70 pounds of marijuana or 10-19 marijuana plants – Class D felony punishable by $2,000-$50,000 in fines and/or 2-12 years in prison
- 20-99 marijuana plants – Class C felony punishable by $2,000-$100,000 in fines and/or 3-15 years in prison
- 70-300 pounds of marijuana or 100-499 marijuana plants – Class B felony punishable by $2,000-$200,000 in fines and/or 8-30 years in prison
- 300 pounds or more of marijuana or 500 or more marijuana plants – Class A felony punishable by $2,000-$500,000 in fines and/or 15-60 years in prison
Note that if any of the above activities occurred in a drug-free zone, the defendant will face an additional fine based on their charge:
- Class A felony – $100,000
- Class B felony – $60,000
- Class C felony – $40,000
- Class D felony – $20,000
- Class E felony – $10,000
If you have been accused of a drug-related offense in Jackson, Tennessee, do not hesitate to consult a defense attorney immediately. Whether you have been accused of possession or distribution, you could be facing significant fines and jail time, as well as a stain on your criminal record. Our drug defense lawyers can strategize an effective defense against your charges, whether that means arguing unknowing possession or false claims regarding intent to sell.
Schedule a free initial consultation with The Donahoe Firm online or at (731) 207-8071 to get started on your defense.