Get an Attorney Who Understands Marijuana Charges

Ryan J. Tegnelia is an experienced San Diego criminal defense attorney who understands marijuana charges and how best to defend against them.  He will make sure that your rights are protected, and he will fight for a dismissal of or a reduction in charges against you and, if your case goes to trial, for a not guilty verdict.

Variations in Marijuana Possession Charges

If you are facing a marijuana possession charge, that is certainly not the end of the story.  Variations in offenses may involve the amount of marijuana, where you were charged with possessing the drug, the form of marijuana involved, and what it is alleged you were going to do with it.  The answers to these questions can make a big difference in the severity of the charges against you.  Here are some of the variations:

Simple Possession

If you are charged with possession of pot, the severity of the charge will depend in the first instance on the amount allegedly in your possession.  Under HS 11357, possession of up to 28.5 grams (one ounce) is an infraction.  No jail time, and a fine of not more than $100 if you are convicted.  If the amount is more than one ounce, the offense is a misdemeanor, which carries a maximum of six months in jail, and a $500 fine.


Possession of an ounce or less of marijuana by an adult on school property (during school hours) is punishable by a fine and up to ten days in jail. If you are under the age of 18, the penalty is a fine, and the possibility of commitment to juvenile hall for up to ten days.


Concentrated cannabis goes by a number of different names.  No matter what you call it, the penalties are harsh, certainly by comparison to possession of marijuana.  Possession carries a sentence of up to a year in jail; depending upon your prior criminal history, it could be charged as a felony.

Possession For Sale

If the charge against you is possession for sale of marijuana, you are facing a more serious charge than those listed above. Possession for sale is a felony. In order to charge you, it is not necessary that the police have direct evidence that you were trying to sell the drug. Facts such as possession of large amounts of cash, possession of packaging for marijuana, and possession of scales, could allow a jury could conclude that you intended the marijuana not for personal use, but rather to sell to others.

The lesson here is that just because the drug in your case happens to be marijuana, does not necessarily mean that there will be few, if any, serious consequences if you are convicted.

Dealing Marijuana

While some marijuana offenses are treated rather lightly under California law, this is not the case with trafficking charges. If the amount is an ounce or less, selling, giving away or transporting marijuana is a misdemeanor. If the amount is more than an ounce, you are facing a felony charge. Additional factors (for example using a minor to sell marijuana) will lead to even stiffer penalties.

Will I go to jail on a marijuana charge?

If you are facing a prescription drug charge, there is hope.  You are innocent until proven guilty, and there are numerous defenses that can be raised, and raised successfully, in these cases.  Remember that the prosecutor must prove the case against you beyond a reasonable doubt.  Call us today, and schedule a free, confidential consultation with attorney Ryan J. Tegnelia.