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Missouri Marijuana Laws

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Penalty Details

Legislation was approved in 2014 to rewrite Missouri’s criminal code so that the possession of ten grams or less of cannabis is punishable by a fine only though the offense remains classified as a criminal misdemeanor. These changes took effect on January 1, 2017. The possession of greater quantities of cannabis remains punishable by jail time.

See

  • See Chapter 579, RSMo 
  • See Section 558.002, RSMo
  • See Section 558.011, RSMo

Possession

Possession of up to ten grams for first-time offenders is Class D misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $500, but no jail time.

Possession of over 10 grams but less than 35 grams is a Class A misdemeanor which is punishable by a maximum sentence of 1 year imprisonment and a maximum fine of $2,000. Second-time marijuana possession offenses are also classified as a Class A misdemeanor offense, even if the quantity possessed is under 10 grams.

Possession of 35 grams- 30 kilograms* is a Class D felony which is punishable by up to 7 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.

*Depending on facts, possession of more than 35g, but less than 30kg, has often, historically, been charged as intent to distribute. Same as Distribution penalties below.

Sale, Distribution

The sale or manufacture of 35 grams or less is a Class E felony which is punishable by up to 4 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.

Distribution 35 grams or less to a minor is a Class C felony punishable by a sentence of 3 – 10 years and a fine of $10,000.

The sale or manufacture of 35 grams-30 kilograms is a Class C felony which is punishable by a sentence of 3 – 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $10,000.

Distribution 35 grams-30 kilograms or less to a minor is a Class B felony punishable by a sentence of 5 – 15 years and a fine of 2x profit.

Distribution near school, recreational park or public housing is a Class A felony punishable by a sentence of 10 – 30 years, or life imprisonment and a fine of 2x profit.

Trafficking

Possess or bring into state 30 – 100 kilograms is a Class C felony punishable by a sentence of 3 to 10 years and a fine of $10,000.

Possess or bring into state 100kg or more or 500 plants or more is a Class B felony which is punishable by a sentence of 5 – 15 years imprisonment and a fine of 2x profit.

Distribute, manufacture 30 – less than 100 kg is a Class B felony which is punishable by a sentence of 5 – 15 years imprisonment and a fine of 2x profit.

Distribute, manufacture 100 kg or more is a Class A felony which is punishable by a sentence of 10 – 30 years, or life imprisonment and a fine of 2x profit.

Cultivation

35 grams or less is a Class E felony which is punishable by up to 4 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.

35 grams or more is a Class C felony which is punishable by a sentence of 3 – 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $10,000.

Any amount near school Class B Felony punishable by a sentence of 5 to 15 years and a fine of 2 x profit.

Hash & Concentrates

The penalties for hashish and concentrates are exactly the same as for marijuana in Missouri.

See

  • Section 195.010(24) of the Missouri Criminal Code 
  • State v. Randall, 540 S.W.2d 156, 159 
  • State v. Evans, 637 S.W.2d 62 (Mo App. 1982)

(Mo.App.1976) (“Although ‘hashish’ is not specifically listed in the schedules, it is clearly included within the statutory definition of marihuana.”)

Paraphernalia

The possession of paraphernalia is a misdemeanor which is punishable by a fine of $500 for a first offense. A second offense is punishable a maximum sentence of 1 year imprisonment and a maximum fine of $2,000.

Unlawful manufacture of paraphernalia is a misdemeanor which is punishable by a maximum sentence of 1 year imprisonment and a maximum fine of $2,000.

For commercial purposes, manufacture of paraphernalia is a felony is punishable by a maximum sentence of 4 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $10,000.

Miscellaneous

Possession or use of marijuana results in a driver’s license suspension if the offender is under the age of 21 at the time the offense was committed.

DECRIMINALIZATION

The state has decriminalized marijuana to some degree. Typically, decriminalization means no prison time or criminal record for first-time possession of a small amount for personal consumption. The conduct is treated like a minor traffic violation.

DRUGGED DRIVING

This state has a per se drugged driving law enacted. In their strictest form, these laws forbid drivers from operating a motor vehicle if they have a detectable level of an illicit drug or drug metabolite (i.e., compounds produced from chemical changes of a drug in the body, but not necessarily psychoactive themselves) present in their bodily fluids above a specific, state-imposed threshold. \

HEMP

This state has an active hemp industry or has authorized research. Hemp is a distinct variety of the plant species cannabis sativa L. that contains minimal (less than 1%) amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Various parts of the plant can be utilized in the making of textiles, paper, paints, clothing, plastics, cosmetics, foodstuffs, insulation, animal feed, and other products. \

MANDATORY MINIMUM SENTENCE

When someone is convicted of an offense punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence, the judge must sentence the defendant to the mandatory minimum sentence or to a higher sentence. The judge has no power to sentence the defendant to less time than the mandatory minimum. A prisoner serving an MMS for a federal offense and for most state offenses will not be eligible for parole. Even peaceful marijuana smokers sentenced to “life MMS” must serve a life sentence with no chance of parole.

MEDICAL CBD

This state has passed a medical CBD law allowing for the use of cannabis extracts that are high in CBD and low in THC in instances where a physician has recommended such treatment to a patient with a state-qualifying condition.

Missouri Drugged Driving

In Missouri, a person is guilty of DWI if he or she operates a motor vehicle while in an intoxicated or drugged condition. Mo. Ann. Stat. § 577.010(1) (West 2010). A person is in an “intoxicated condition” when he is under the influence of alcohol, a controlled substance, or drug, or any combination thereof. Id.§ 577.010(3).

Implied Consent

  • Any person who operates a motor vehicle upon the public highways of Missouri shall be deemed to have given consent to chemical tests of the person’s breath, blood, saliva or urine for the purpose of determining the alcohol or drug content of the person’s blood. Id. § 577.020(1).
  • If a person when requested to submit to any test requests to speak to an attorney, the person shall be granted twenty minutes in which to attempt to contact an attorney. Id. § 577.041(1). The right is only triggered if person requests to speak to attorney. Id.
  • If accused refuses upon the request of the officer to submit to any test, then none shall be given and evidence of the refusal shall be admissible in a DUI prosecution. Id. § 577.041(1).
  • Refusal will result in license suspension for one year. Id. § 577.041(3).
  • The person tested may have a physician, or a qualified technician, chemist, registered nurse, or other qualified person at the choosing and expense of the person to be tested, administer a test in addition to any administered at the direction of a law enforcement officer. The failure or inability to obtain an additional test by a person shall not preclude the admission of evidence relating to the test taken at the direction of a law enforcement officer. Id. § 577.020(5).

Penalties

  • First Offense Class B misdemeanor – imprisonment term not to exceed 6 months; offender required to participate in and successfully complete a substance abuse traffic offender program; 30 days mandatory license suspension. Id. § 577.010(2); Id. 558.011(1)(6); Id §577.049(1).
  • Second Offense (within 5 years) class A misdemeanor – imprisonment term not to exceed 1 year; 5 days mandatory minimum imprisonment; 30 days community service; fine of not more than $1,000; two year mandatory license suspension Id. § 577.023(2); Id. § 577.023(1)(6); Id. § 558.011(1)(5).
  • Third Offense Class D felony – imprisonment for a mandatory 5 days, but not to exceed 4 years; 60 days community service; fine of up to $5,000; license revocation for at least three years. Id. § 577.023(1)(5)(a); Id. § 577.023(3); Id. § 558.011(1)(4).
  • Fourth Offense Class C felony – imprisonment for a mandatory 60 days, but not more than 7 years; fine of up to $5,000; license revocation for at least three years. Id. § 558.011(1)(3).
  • Fifth Offense Class B felony – imprisonment term not less than 5 years, and not to exceed 15 years; license revocation for at least three years. Id. § 558.011(1)(2).

Sobriety Checkpoints

In Missouri, law enforcement officials are entitled to conduct sobriety checkpoints under both the state and federal Constitutions.

  • State v. Canton, 775 S.W.2d 352 (1989) requires written procedures for checkpoints.
  • Attempt to avoid a checkpoint by making a U-turn after sign announcing sobriety checkpoint produced probable cause for stop. Oughton v. Director of Revenue, 916 S.W.2d 462 (1996).
  • Police may use a deceptive “drug checkpoint,” from which vehicles will turn amounting to “individualized suspicion” thereby allowing for a stop. Missouri v. Mack, 2002 Lexis 12 (Mo. 2002).

Missouri Hemp Law

Year Passed: 2014
Summary: House Bill 2238 permits the Department of Agriculture to grow industrial hemp for research purposes. This bill allows for the use of “hemp extract” to treat individuals with epilepsy after receiving the recommendation of a neurologist. Additionally, House Bill 2054 states that industrial hemp is not considered a controlled substance and that it is legal for anyone who has not been convicted of a drug-related offense to cultivate hemp. 
Statute: Mo. Rev. Stat. § 261.265 (2014)