Wisconsin Law on Marijuana
“It’s just a little weed” is not an excuse in Wisconsin, where the cultivation, possession, and sale of the substance in any amount is illegal. You will be arrested if you are found in possession of marijuana, and the penalties can be considerable. As pointed out on the website of Kohler Hart Powell, SC, state prosecutors push for the harshest possible penalties for drug crimes, even “a little weed.” If you are arrested for possession of marijuana, you need to contact a criminal defense lawyer at once to avoid a conviction, or at least to get a lighter sentence. Not doing so could occur in a harsher penalty that can affect the rest of your life.
It is perfectly possible that Wisconsin may soon join the ranks of states that have legalized marijuana to some extent. Some states have even legalized it for recreational as well as medical use. A bill proposed in April this year is expected to encounter considerable opposition from Wisconsin state legislators, a majority of which are Republicans, so it may not be in the cards for 2015. However, it may happen soon.
It will not be soon enough for some people. Until it does pass through the legislature, you can still be charges with a drug crime for possession of marijuana. If you are a first time offender with a small amount of the substance (less than 200 grams or 4 plans), the penalty is a hefty fine ($1,000) and up to 6 months in jail. Subsequent convictions mean an escalation in fines and jail time, up to $10,000 and 3.5 years in prison.
However, the picture changes if you have more than a little weed. If you are caught with more than 200 grams or 5 plants, the stakes go higher. The maximum penalty for having more than 10 kilograms or 200 plants in your possession is 15 years in jail plus a fine of $25,000. If you are found with the stuff within the vicinity of a school or any drug-free zone or selling to minors, this means five more years on top of your sentence.
It is important to engage the services of a competent criminal defense lawyer and not just to avoid fines and jail time; any criminal conviction is a glaring black mark in your record. The fact that it is a drug crime means you will be barred from certain professions and other opportunities in life.