Police in Pennsylvania Don’t Understand The Marijuana Laws
The headline says it all but who can blame them, right? It does get quite confusing. PA’s complex marijuana laws are one of the main reasons why policemen sometimes commit mistakes themselves. But being men in uniform makes it even more crucial for them to make sure they’re doing a great job.
This is why it’s so important to have a grasp about the law so that you can avoid trouble, as much as you can. Ignorance of the law excuses no one, not even the police so best be careful. In this article, we’ll discuss just how complex medical marijuana laws in PA are and how police get confused.
Complex Laws of PA
Currently, important people are doing their best when it comes to pushing for the decriminalization of marijuana all over the state. We all know that it’s still quite a sensitive issue and law enforcers aren’t so friendly with those who manage to break some laws.
One of the most complex ideas to grasp in the PA medical marijuana law is the definition of possession. Here we’ll discuss them separately:
Possession of Small Amount of Marijuana
In Pennsylvania, you’re most life to get in jail if you posses even just a few pieces of medical marijuana. Here, it’s defined as 30 grams or less. If ever you’re caught with marijuana just within your reach, you could be jailed for 30 days and fined for $500.
Lucky for you, this kind of offense is one of the lightest ones and don’t have extreme consequences that could cost you tons of opportunities.
Such an event could lead to consequences like your license getting suspended. Your first offense would mean a suspension for six months but succeeding offenses don’t go for less than a year. Your license could get suspended for two years and you can’t drive anything.
This is different from Possession of Small Amount of Marijuana because this includes all types of illegal drugs including marijuana, cocaine, meth, and heroin. If ever you’re caught having drugs like these, it also has a different set of consequences.
Here it’s also assumed that the drugs you have with you are just for personal use and not for distribution which makes it different from Possession with Intent to Deliver.
When you’re first found with any kind of drug, you can be imprisoned for a year and fined up to $5,000. The second offense would be imprisonment for up to three years and a fine of $25,000. The suspension of your driver’s license remains the same with the previous definition of possession.
Possession with Intent to Distribute
Here, it’s quite obvious what it’s for. In cases where you’re found having drugs you intend to distribute, you’re subjected to severe offenses and it constitutes to felony offenses. No matter what kind of drug it is, this is one of the worst offenses in the state.
This has a lot of factors including the amount of illegal drugs on-hand and the times you were caught guilty of the same offense as before.
Punishment depends on the kind of drug you were intending to distribute. You could be jailed for a year or five. Fines are also quite high for this offense.
Where All the Confusion Comes
Even by just reading through the previous section, you’d know how hard it is to classify where each possession case could fall into.
Depending on the factors you base it on, it’s very obvious how policemen get confused all the time. Here are some areas why it’s probably causing so much confusion:
Amount of Drugs On-Hand
This is one of the aspects that will surely be debated over and over again. In terms of amount, you can never really tell if it’s for distribution or for personal use.
Even there was just a small amount of drug found on the person, it could still be possible that this was still for distribution.
Marijuana possession falls into to categories of possession, Possession of Small Amount of Marijuana and Simple Possession.
If you look at it this way, where should you actually classify it under? Under the former or latter? It gets confusing because it’s qualified for both which makes it harder to classify.
These are just two factors that cause a lot of confusion, even for police officers. Not knowing what to base the amount of drugs on is one thing, but classifying it under what kind of possession is another.
You can’t really blame people if they still get confused with the three kinds of possession categories in PA. It’s already quite difficult to understand it, even with this article. Hopefully, policemen in the state follow their best judgement and classify them accordingly.
For more information, please visit: https://www.veriheal.com/pennsylvania/.