Possession of a Controlled Substance (POCS)
Possession of a controlled substance (POCS) can involve many different types of drugs including cocaine, methamphetamine, Adderall and other prescription drugs, opium, and more. Unlike possession of a small amount of marijuana, which is a misdemeanor, the possession of a small amount of some other drugs can be a felony punishable by significant prison time and fines up to $10,000.
Under the TX Controlled Substances Act, there are four different ‘penalty groups’ that drugs are classified under, and each group contains dozens of different drugs (except marijuana). Penalty Group I (TX HSC §481.102) contains the most serious drugs like cocaine, morphine, codeine, opium, and methamphetamine, while Penalty Groups II, III, and IV contain less dangerous drugs. In most drug cases, the severity of the charge depends on which penalty group the drug is classified under and the amount of the drug possessed. For example, Possession of a Controlled Substance in Penalty Group I (TX HSC, §481.115) is a State Jail felony (the lowest level felony) “if the amount of the controlled substance possessed is, by aggregate weight, including adulterants or dilutants, less than one gram.”
Most POCS cases generally revolve around two major issues: whether the defendant had actual possession of the drug, and whether the search that yielded the drug was legal. If the search was illegal or if the defendant did not have actual possession of the drug, an experienced attorney may be able to get the case dismissed.
A conviction for possession of a controlled substance will trigger an automatic suspension of your Texas driver’s license for 180 days and could significantly limit future employment opportunities, especially in the medical and transportation fields (ex: commercial pilot’s license, nursing license, etc.).
Call The Law Office of Gregory R. Terra at (512) 635-4368 for an experienced, local, and highly rated attorney to assist you in your criminal case.