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St. Louis Criminal Defense Law Blog

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Cops Know Marijuana Is Legal In Colorado, Oregon, and Washington Too

            That’s why they’re hanging out on eastbound I-70 in Warren County, Saint Charles County, and Saint Louis County, just waiting for someone to come driving by with several pounds of marijuana in the car (preferably travelling faster than the posted speed limit, or with a broken taillight, or something).  The marijuana may have been legally purchased in Colorado, but it is still illegal to transport through Missouri.  So the cops are waiting – looking for out-of-state license plates and any reason to pull the vehicle over.

             Although attitudes about marijuana are changing, Missouri still has some of the harshest marijuana laws on the books.  Possession of any amount of marijuana, for any reason, is a Class A Misdemeanor carrying a penalty of up to one year in jail.  Possession of more than 35 grams of marijuana is a felony carrying a penalty of up to seven years in prison.  And possession of more than five grams (yes, just five grams) of marijuana with the intent to distribute carries a range of punishment of five to 15 years at the Missouri Department of Corrections.

             I have had several cases in the past couple of years where someone (who had no ties to Missouri) was passing through the area eastbound on Interstate 70 on their way home from Colorado, Oregon, or Washington – with several pounds of marijuana in the car.  Fortunately, most Missouri judges have become more understanding about possession of a small amount of marijuana.  But several pounds are another matter.  So is transporting it across state lines for distribution in another state.  These are serious cases, and the State often seeks prison time.

             If you live out of state but find yourself accused of travelling Interstate 70 through Warren County, St. Charles County, or St. Louis County, Missouri, with a large amount of marijuana in the car, you probably do not know any lawyers in the area.  But you desperately need a lawyer with experience in these kinds of cases.  Sometimes the stop or search can be contested, and depending on the facts and your background, it may be possible to avoid prison. 

             If you were caught transporting a large amount of marijuana through Warren County, Saint Charles County, or Saint Louis County, Missouri, call criminal defense attorney W. Scott Rose at (314) 812-4700 today.




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