The Basics of Drug Crimes
There is much confusion surrounding drug offenses in Ohio. The drug laws and classifications are vast and tremendously complex. If you are charged with a drug-related crime, you should contact an experienced attorney immediately.
What is a drug crime?
Drug crimes in Ohio usually have to do with possessing, manufacturing or distributing illegal drugs.
Some common drug crimes in Ohio include:
OVI – It is against the law to operate a vehicle while under the influence of an illegal drug.
Drug trafficking – It is a crime to sell or offer to sell an illegal drug. It is also illegal to knowingly prepare, ship, deliver, or distribute an illegal drug intended for sale by the perpetrator or by someone else.
Drug possession – It is illegal to knowingly possess an illegal drug, even for a short period of time.
Marijuana cultivation – It is against Ohio law to knowingly cultivate, manufacture or otherwise engage in the production of marijuana or any other controlled substance.
What drugs are illegal in Ohio?
In Ohio illegal drugs are also known as controlled substances. A controlled substance is a drug that when taken has the potential for abuse or dependence. Drugs such as marijuana, LSD, cocaine, and methamphetamines are all illegal controlled substances in this state.
What about prescription drugs?
It is always legal to possess and take drugs properly prescribed to a patient by a professionally licensed person. However, it is against the law to use prescription drugs not prescribed to you or to give someone else prescriptions drugs that are prescribed only to you.
Marijuana is legal for medical purposes in other states. What about Ohio?
The possession, distribution and cultivation of marijuana, for any purpose, is still illegal in this state. If you are caught with marijuana on your person, you will likely be arrested and charged.
However, the possession of less than 100 grams of marijuana as well as the transport from one person to another of less than 20 grams is a minor misdemeanor in Ohio. A minor misdemeanor charge involves no jail time but you will likely have to pay a fine if found guilty.
Should I allow the police to search my home for drugs?
The United State Constitution and the Ohio constitution both protect an individual from an illegal search and seizure by police. It is illegal for law enforcement to enter your home without a warrant to search for drugs. However, many exceptions to this rule exist including consent to the search. If the police ask to enter your home to search for drugs and you allow them in, you have consented to the search and the police may legally enter and search.
Are there any defenses to a drug crime?
Drug crimes are difficult to defend and you will need an attorney in order to fight the charge. Don’t hesitate to reach out to an experienced Ohio attorney for help.