Texas Law, Drug Paraphernalia, and Criminal Defense

Expect to have a criminal defense team in your corner when you come face to face with the Texas court judicial system. Texas judges are tough and so are Texans, so if you are needing to appear in Travis County or the surrounding area for a docket call or pre-trial hearing, call Jackson F. Gorski Law Firm. The State of Texas’ Penal Code system has criminal penalties that are strict while enforcing the law in Texas. Whether it’s a misdemeanor or federal drug related charge, the price to pay is more than money owed to the State because of fines. Jail time, probation, various anti drug or AA meetings to attend and so on,…is part of the package. You wouldn’t want to face any of them, especially jail time. Unless you can handle the punishment and pay a sentencing term with your freedom, then go right ahead. But within the laws of Texas, it’s best to get yourself a good criminal defense attorney.

Here’s a common example of what my law firm handles.

“Possession or delivery of drug paraphernalia (…18 or older and [the] person receiving the drugs or intending to receive paraphernalia *and is younger than 18, but at least three years younger than the ‘actor’) will face at least 6 months in jail.”

[Texas Health & Safety Code §481.125(c), (f)]

Drug free zones

Texas is known to have strict laws for possession of a controlled substance. One common illegal substance found in vehicles stopped for traffic violations are narcotics and alcohol. STATS When drug possession laws or drug paraphernalia possession laws are broken, a conviction is almost certain in most cases. In fact, possession of any drug, or the intent to distribute or manufacturer a controlled substance is now enhanced as the following.

With a criminal defense attorney handling your case, you’ll be informed and taught various addendum or updates to the law of Texas as you get closer for your date in court. Don’t think of it as a negative thing happening in your life, even though it is in scope, try to think of it as a ‘growth experience’ in character and in the eyes of Texas. With that said, here is one in many enhancement NOTEs on certain laws in the State of Texas.

At Drug-Free Zones (for offenses punishable as second degree felonies under §§481.112, 481.1121, 481.113, 481.114, or 481.120, Punishment has been increased to a felony charge of the first degree.

[Texas Health & Safety §481.134(b)]

You could face jail time, probation, fines, and a 6 month loss of your driver’s license when you get a drug paraphernalia possession charge, but when it’s a drug free zone, it’s far more in scope as well.

Violations of the Texas Penal Code, The Texas Controlled Substances Act, and Health and Safety Code laws do provide for the more detail points of law. They in fact, should be applied with “cases of possession of illegal drugs.”

Understanding the common applied Texas laws and penalties given in the Texas courtrooms isn’t always interpreted by the average person nor understand every one single law after another.


Texas Drug Possession Defense Strategies

The state of Texas has diversion programs for first time offenders. Only if they are eligible to have their charges dropped after completing the program.

Drug free treatments and educational programs for offenders are part of the defense strategy which, some, have strict program requirements. The treatment and programs, community alternative sentencing can be determined by a judge. Your criminal record can be cleared too when you complete the Diversion Programs in the State of Texas. This basically keeps your criminal record clean! Nevertheless, there are always opportunities to fight for your rights or basically defend your case in court and on your behalf.

Winning a drug case can be bitter-sweet at times, especially when you want to start your day with a phone call to our law firm. For free consultation and in order to discuss the case such as charges for drug paraphernalia, you must call. We can evaluate your case and work some out something in your defense. It’s the only chance for you to begin structuring your life once again and on the right track.

Penalties, Fines and Jail Times

  • For first time offense: “a person … knowingly or intentionally uses or possesses with intent to sale drug paraphernalia” is a Class C Misdemeanor. “A conviction will involve fines of up to $500 with conviction of a drug offense will result in a loss of your drivers’ license. Your license can be suspended for a year depending on your age.
  • For first time offense: Sale or delivery or possession with intent to deliver, or manufacturing with intent to deliver drug paraphernalia. This is a Class A misdemeanor. “A conviction may result to a minimum of 1 year in jail. Fines can be up to $4,000.”
  • For second offense: “Sale or delivery is NOW a felony and punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of 90 days in jail up to a maximum sentence of 1 year in prison with a maximum fine of $4,000.”
  • Selling or delivering drug paraphernalia to underage (17 yrs. or younger) is NOW a felony punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of 180 days in jail up to a maximum sentence of 1 year in prison with maximum fine of up to $10,000.

On another level, the last count of general population in Travis County this year was a little more than 1 million.

Those who violate Code of Criminal Procedure, 42.12, §3g(a)(1), for the department of Texas Health Safety Code §481.140 or 481.134 (c), (d), (e), (f), Drug-Free Zones is one of those laws that truly enforce drug free locations or places, such as schools, churches, malls, skate parks,…etc.

According to Chapter 481 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, the definition of drug paraphernalia is defined as the following.

“Drug paraphernalia means equipment, a product, or material that is used or intended for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, or concealing a controlled substance in violation of this chapter or in injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this chapter (Source: TexasPenalCode.com/)”

It goes further on to list the equipment used or material used for illegal drugs.

“(i) a metal, wooden, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic pipe with or without a screen, permanent screen, hashish head, or punctured metal bowl; (ii) a water pipe; (iii) a carburetion tube or device; (iv) a smoking or carburetion mask; (v) a chamber pipe; (vi) a carburetor pipe; (vii) an electric pipe; (viii) an air-driven pipe; (ix) a chillum; (x) a bong; or…Source: TexasPenalCode.com/)”

Overview of Drug Paraphernalia Possession Law

Below is the Texas laws of Drug Paraphernalia Possession example of a drug paraphernalia charge.

  • A person in college or at work happens to have “zip lock” bags in their backpack because he/she needs the bags for lunch “stuff.” Security saw the bags during a lunch break and since they’ve seen them, and the spoons you brought as well, they question you, you have now gained a “drug paraphernalia possession” charge because of the probable cause rule.
  • A person with syringes in the backseat of their car (because it’s their diabetic parent’s medical necessities) has now caused you to be questioned about drug paraphernalia in your possession.
  • A person with smoke pipes and bongs scattered around the dining area when the police arrive to your apartment because they were called because the music was too loud has now caused you a night in jail for drug paraphernalia in your possession.

Drug Paraphernalia Possession Laws in Texas and the basis of understanding

Each drug crime case is unique, and depending on the specifics of the case you are facing, your penalties may vary; however, there are some specifications outlined in the Texas State Penal Code which could give you an idea of what you may be up against. With a criminal defense attorney from Austin, Texas on your side, fighting for you while keeping you informed of all legal matters during the course of your case proceedings, you may get a reduction or even better, a dismissal, depending on the degree of the drug related charge.

There are four types of drug related charges in Texas with strict criminal penalties.

  1. Drug possession: Having illegal substances on you, in your home or in your vehicle can warrant an arrest and charge of drug possession.
  2. Drug distribution: Also known as drug trafficking, this crime involves the physical passing of an illegal substance from one person to another or from one place to another.
  3. Drug sales: The sale of illegal substances for profit of any type is a common and serious crime that holds immense penalties.
  4. Drug use: Operating a vehicle under the influence of an illegal substance, or being under the influence when arrested can result in a drug crime charge. Additional Paragraph Related to Drug Paraphernalia Possession Statistics

Potential Defenses & Your Rights

In Texas, the rights of a person who gets arrested are broken down to the minimal. With little rights, if convicted, it can interfere with his/her lifestyle, especially without a defense team that knows the “possession” laws in Texas. In other words, you don’t have to say “goodbye to your rights,” when you call Gorski for your defense lawyer.

Facing charges for drug paraphernalia in the municipal, state, or federal level is nothing to be proud of. Unless you are innocent, the charges can stick to your criminal record for years. In fact, in the state of Texas, it stays. Whatever level of the judicial system you have to face to prove your plea for “not guilty” will depend on your aggressiveness of your innocence.

For example, in Travis county and other surrounding counties have diversion programs where first time offenders get charges dropped in exchange for completing this particular program. The requirements include drug treatment and education programs, community service, or other alternative sentencing as determined by a judge.

If you have been arrested, contact an Austin criminal defense attorney like Jackson F. Gorski. When you immediately find out you have to appear in a docket call or if you are arrested, in jail, or know someone who is call Gorski immediately. If you have a “motion to revoke” charge now because of a drug paraphernalia charge, call The Law Office of Jackson F. Gorski .

TDC, three meals and a cot daily

It’s packed in the state and county jails as we speak, but the Texas Department of Correction’s will find a way to make room for you! If you like “3 meals and a cot” daily with no sunshine, then by all means, you can face your charges alone without getting representation. Although you may want to study up on all statutes and laws line by line because the least charge of possession for the first offense carries minimum of 6 months. Otherwise, if you face criminal charges such as Drug paraphernalia in Texas, especially in Travis County and the surrounding Austin area, call Gorski Law in Austin, Texas.

Understanding both sides of the court system, such as the prosecution’s best case scenario can allow me and my specialists to plan a rightful solution according to the case and the penalties against you in the Texas courts of Travis County or the surrounding area of Texas.

The solution for your case is unique as are most cases in general. Why?

Everyone is different. Everyone has a story. Personally, obtaining an understanding of what happened on the day of arrest of your drug paraphernalia charge is the beginning of a winning solution when facing your court date, if at all.

We will attempt to create a defense team that is customized with your case and with the best interests always in mind. Professional law firms don’t use a template-like approach. We take things such as criminal charges and attempt to defend because of your Constitution rights plus your plea being solved in court without having to take it to trial.

Everyone makes mistakes or gets into some type of trouble unknowingly, or accidentally, or even by chance such as hanging around ‘with the wrong crowd’. Facing various challenges in life that causes us to turn from our good ways happens to the best of us. If you’ve been arrested, or know someone who has for drug paraphernalia, don’t face it alone. Don’t face your criminal charges alone in the courts of Travis county or the surrounding area. If you live in Texas and you broke the law, know you’re innocent until proven guilty.

Call a professional criminal defense lawyer in Travis County or the surrounding area to help with your defense in court. Your Constitutional Rights in court will be processed in every bit of detail. It’s important to hire an experienced and knowledgeable Texas criminal defense lawyer with the skills needed to defend your freedom when you are charged with a drug-related crime. In order to defend those needing representation in the Texas court system, you need an aggressive lawyer and criminal defense team on your side of the ring.

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