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Drug Crimes Criminal & DUI Defense in Colorado

Jefferson County Drug Crimes Attorney

Defending Against Controlled Substances Charges

In Colorado, drug crimes can be charged as drug petty offenses, drug misdemeanors, or drug felonies. Regardless of the level, all accusations of a controlled substance offense should be taken seriously. A conviction can affect your entire life. For instance, you may be subject to incarceration or fines, which can impact your finances and personal or professional relationships. Also, you will have a mark on your criminal record, which is publicly accessible and may influence the decisions of potential landlords and employers. Additionally, a drug crime conviction can disqualify you from government assistance such as financial aid for school or public housing. Thus, even after you have completed your sentence, you can still feel the effects of your conviction for years to come.

Fortunately, you have the right to challenge the accusations against you. By fighting your charge, you can seek to prevent or avoid the adverse consequences that can befall you. Defending your innocence takes skill and tenacity, qualities you can find in an experienced criminal defense attorney. At Jim Medley Defense Lawyer, our Denver drug crimes attorney has the experience, education, and training to vigorously defend you. He is a former police officer with three master's degrees (one in Criminal Justice, another in Forensic Toxicology, and one in Education). Attorney Jim Medley has also been practicing law for over a decade and can effectively guide you through your case.

For legal help from a zealous advocate who cares about safeguarding your future, reach out to our drug crimes lawyer in Denver by calling (720) 674-7311 or submitting an online contact form today.

Colorado's Schedules of Controlled Substances

To better understand Colorado's drug laws and the penalties that can be imposed for a violation, it is helpful to understand how drugs are classified. Colorado separates controlled substances into five different categories, referred to as drug schedules. These schedules are distinguished by the perceived dangerousness of the drugs.

The controlled substances schedules are as follows:

  • Schedule I:
    • High potential for abuse
    • No accepted or safe medical use
  • Schedule II:
    • High potential for abuse
    • Accepted medical use
    • Potential to cause severe psychological or physical dependence
  • Schedule III:
    • Potential for abuse is lower than that for Schedule I or II drugs
    • Accepted medical use
    • Can cause moderate or low physical dependence or high psychological dependence
  • Schedule IV:
    • Lower potential for abuse than that for Schedule III drugs
    • Accepted medical use
    • Can lead to limited psychological or physical dependence
  • Schedule V:
    • Lower potential for abuse than drugs in Schedule IV
    • Accepted medical use
    • Potential for limited psychological or physical dependence but such effect is lower than that for Schedule IV drugs

Types of Drug Crimes in Colorado

Colorado has several laws concerning drug offenses. They relate to the unlawful cultivation, delivery, manufacture, and possession of controlled substances prescription drugs.

Drug Cultivation

A couple of different statutes prohibit the cultivation of controlled substances. These include CRS § 18-18-406.2, which concerns the cultivation of any amount of synthetic cannabinoids or salvia divinorum, and CRS § 18-18-406, which prohibits the cultivation of a certain number of marijuana plants.

Cultivating cannabinoids or salvia is a level 3 drug felony, penalized by:

  • 2 to 4 years of imprisonment and/or
  • $2,000 to $500,000 in fines

The penalties for cultivating marijuana on residential property depends on the defendant’s history and the number of plants involved.

Below are the possible punishments:

  • More than 12 plants – Level 1 drug petty offense:
    • Fine of up to $1,000
  • More than 12 but not more than 24 plants, second or subsequent conviction – Level 1 drug misdemeanor:
    • 6 to 18 months of incarceration and/or
    • $500 to $5,000 in fines
  • More than 24 plants and second or subsequent offense – Level 3 drug felony:
    • 2 to 4 years of imprisonment and/or
    • $2,000 to $500,000 in fines

Drug Delivery

Drug delivery offenses are covered in CRS §§ 18-18-405 and 18-18-406. The first statute concerns offenses involving the distribution of Schedule I through V drugs, and the second deals with the sale or transfer of marijuana.

The level of charge and penalties imposed for delivering Schedule I through V drugs are as follows:

  • Level 1 drug felony:
    • More than 225 grams of a Schedule I or II controlled substance;
    • More than 112 grams of methamphetamine, heroin, ketamine, or cathinones;
    • More than 50 milligrams of flunitrazepam; or
    • Any amount of a Schedule I or II drug when an adult delivers it to a minor

Penalties include:

    • 8 to 32 years of imprisonment and/or
    • $5,000 to $1,000,000 in fines
  • Level 2 drug felony:
    • More than 14 grams but no more than 225 grams of a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance;
    • More than 7 grams but not more than 112 grams of methamphetamine, heroin, ketamine, or cathinones;
    • More than 10 milligrams but not more than 50 milligrams of flunitrazepam; or
    • Any amount of a Schedule III or IV drug when an adult delivers it to a minor

Penalties include:

    • 4 to 8 years of imprisonment
    • $3,000 to $750,000 in fines
  • Level 3 drug felony:
    • Not more than 14 grams of a Schedule I or II controlled substance;
    • Not more than 7 grams of methamphetamine, heroin, ketamine, or cathinones;
    • Not more than 10 milligrams of flunitrazepam;
    • More than 4 grams of a Schedule III or IV controlled substance

Penalties include:

    • 2 to 4 years of imprisonment and/or
    • $2,000 to $5,000 in fines
  • Level 4 drug felony:
    • Not more than 4 grams of a Schedule III or IV controlled substance

Penalties include:

    • 6 months to 1 year of imprisonment and/or
    • $1,000 to $100,000 in fines
  • Level 1 drug misdemeanor:
    • Any amount of a Schedule V controlled substance, or
    • Delivery of not more than 4 grams of a Schedule III or IV controlled substance when no remuneration was involved

Penalties include:

    • 6 to 18 months of incarceration and/or
    • $500 to $5,000 in fines

Delivery offenses related to marijuana concern the sale, transfer or dispensing of the substance to a minor by an adult.

Charges are as follows:

  • Level 1 drug felony:
    • More than 2 ½ pounds of marijuana, or
    • More than 1 pound of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • 8 to 32 years of imprisonment and/or
    • $5,000 to $1,000,000 in fines
  • Level 2 drug felony:
    • More than 6 ounces but not more than 2 ½ pounds of marijuana, or
    • More than 3 ounces but not more than 1 pound of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • 4 to 8 years of imprisonment
    • $3,000 to $750,000 in fines
  • Level 3 drug felony:
    • More than 1 ounce but not more than 6 ounces of marijuana, or
    • More than ½ ounce but not more than 3 ounces of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • 2 to 4 years of imprisonment and/or
    • $2,000 to $5,000 in fines
  • Level 4 drug felony:
    • Not more than 1 ounce of marijuana, or
    • Not more than ½ ounce of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • 6 months to 1 year of imprisonment and/or
    • $1,000 to $100,000 in fines

Drug Manufacturing

Drug manufacturing concerns making, producing, preparing or processing a controlled substance. CRS § 18-18-405 prohibits such conduct.

The charges and penalties for drug manufacturing are the same as those listed for drug distribution.

Drug Possession

Drug possession offenses concerning Schedule I, II, III, IV, and V controlled substances are enumerated in CRS § 18-18-403.5. Possession of marijuana is covered in CRS § 18-18-406.

Below are the charges and penalties for unlawful possession of controlled substances:

  • Level 4 drug felony:
    • Any amount of flunitrazepam, ketamine, gamma hydroxybutyrate, or cathinones; or
    • More than 4 grams of a Schedule I or II controlled substance

Penalties include:

    • 6 months to 1 year of imprisonment and/or
    • $1,000 to $100,000 in fines
  • Level 1 drug misdemeanor:
    • Not more than 4 grams of a Schedule I or II controlled substance, or
    • Any amount of a Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance

Penalties include:

    • 6 to 18 months of incarceration and/or
    • $500 to $5,000 in fines

Marijuana possession charges are as follows:

  • Level 1 drug misdemeanor:
    • Possession of more than 6 ounces of marijuana, or
    • Possession of more than 3 ounces of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • 6 to 18 months of incarceration and/or
    • $500 to $5,000 in fines
  • Level 2 drug misdemeanor:
    • Possession of more than 3 ounces but not more than 6 ounces of marijuana, or
    • Possession of not more than 3 ounces of marijuana concentrate

Penalties include:

    • Up to 364 days of incarceration and/or
    • $50 to $750 in fines

No matter the offense you have been accused of, you can count on our drug crimes lawyer in Denver to provide the legal representation you need.

Discuss Your Drug Crime Case Today

At Jim Medley Defense Lawyer, our Denver drug crimes attorney has handled possession, distribution, manufacturing, and other controlled substances cases. We recognize how complex these matters are and take the time to understand the facts and build a solid defense.

We are ready to jump into action on your case. Schedule a free consultation by calling us at (720) 674-7311 or contacting us online.

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Experience You Can Trust

Why Hire Jim Medley?
  • Over 10 Years' Experience as a Police Officer
  • Masters Degree in Criminal Justice & Forensic Toxicology
  • Over 30 Years of Experience in the Justice System
  • Hundreds of DWI/DUI Cases Dismissed
  • Instructor of Police Sobriety Tests & Former Police Academy Instructor
  • Professor of Criminal Law

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