Menu Contact
TRBR. Todd Bennett, P.C.

Board Certified, Criminal Law Texas Board of Legal Specialization

Se Habla Español

Distinguished TM AV Lexis Nexis Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standard And Legal Ability Super Lawyers The Best Lawyers in America Bar Register Preeminent Lawyers Board Certified Texas Board of Legal Specialization
More Practice Areas

Man released after 20 years in prison on marijuana charge

Texas residents may have heard that a Missouri man who was sentenced to life in prison for being in possession of marijuana was freed on Sept. 1 after spending two decades in prison. The man, age 62, was released after his relatives, lawmakers and other advocates spent years arguing that the sentence was too severe for the crime.

The man was sentenced to prison in 1996 after he was convicted for conspiring to sell 6 pounds of marijuana. Because he already had previous convictions related to drug offenses, he was sentenced to life with no parole, a legal sentence in Missouri at the time. When his sentence was commuted in May, he was the only person serving this particular sentence for a nonviolent marijuana-related crime.

As society's view towards marijuana has continued to soften, the punishments for possession are changing. Twenty three states have legalized medical marijuana while four states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational use.

While some states are beginning to legally change how marijuana is viewed, the state of Texas still severely punishes those who are convicted on marijuana-related offenses. A person who is convicted of being in possession of even tiny amounts can face up to 180 days in jail and a maximum $2,000 fine. Depending on the situation, an attorney may potentially provide a strong drug charge defense. If the drugs were seized during a traffic stop or investigation, the attorney may argue that the defendant's belongings were illegally searched as the authorities did not have probable cause or consent. Otherwise, a plea deal could reduce the severity of the charges if the evidence against the defendant is strong.

Source: U.S. News & World Report, "Man sentenced to life without parole for marijuana charge is freed in Missouri after 20 years", Summer Ballentine, Associated Press, Sept. 1, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Office Location

R. Todd Bennett, P.C.
1545 Heights Blvd. Suite 600
Houston, TX 77008

Phone: 713-752-2728 | Fax: 713-650-1602
Houston Law Office Map

Gain Insight From A Board certified Texas criminal law Attorney

Privacy Policy | Business Development Solutions by FindLaw, part of Thomson Reuters.