If you’ve ever been accused of a drug crime, you probably already know that some of the penalties can be unfair when compared to crimes of other natures. For instance, there are 116 people in Texas who are serving life sentences for drug possession. Out of those people, seven were in possession of only one to four total grams at the time of their arrests. That’s basically enough for a single person to use.
In the United States, a person is arrested for the possession of drugs for personal use once every 25 seconds. That’s more than 1.25 million arrests every year. There are around 48,000 drug possession offenders in state prisons and 89,000 in jails who had this small amount of drugs in their possession.
There are concerns about Texas, because it has detention in jail systems for pretrial cases. It also treats marijuana possession less severely compared to other drugs. On top of this, Texas has drug possession laws that build for habitual offenders. If a person has had two previous offenses, including felony convictions for drug possession, he or she can face between 25 years to life in prison for holding only one to four grams of drugs in his or her possession.
In Dallas County, the number of people jailed or imprisoned for felony drug possession for less than a gram of drugs was up to 90 percent in 2015. With these facts in mind, it’s important to reach out for help if you’re accused of a drug crime in Texas. An attorney can help you make sure your defense strategy is appropriate for the charges you face and the circumstances of your case. .
Source: Dallas News, “Report: 116 Texas prisoners are serving life sentences for drug possession,” Caleb Downs, Oct. 12, 2016