Unlike some other states, in Texas, it remains illegal to have or use marijuana recreationally. As Austin is the home of a major university an is well known for its youthful culture and music scene, it may be worthwhile for Austin residents to be reminded of the possible penalties for having marijuana in their possession.
Having less than two ounces of marijuana is a Class B misdemeanor in Texas, meaning even a first-time offender can face up to 180 days in a local jail and a $2,000 fine; in this sense, marijuana is treated by state prosecutors a lot like other types of illegal drug possession.
While alternatives to jail and fine are usually available, the bottom line is that even a person who gets caught at a college party with a trace amount of marijuana one time can face a criminal conviction that can follow them around for many years as they go through their professional lives.
If someone living or staying in Texas is found with larger amounts of marijuana, the penalties get more severe. More than two ounces of marijuana means a person can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, meaning they face up to one year in jail and $4,000 fine. Having more than four ounce of marijuana in one's possession can lead to a felony charge and conviction.
In Texas, possession of marijuana is illegal and carries with it the possibility of significant penalties, just like other Texas drug crimes. Whether a student, a visitor or a long-term resident, someone who gets accused of marijuana possession before a Travis County court will want to strongly consider protecting their legal rights. An experienced criminal defense attorney is helpful in this respect.