Which Factors Affect the Penalties of Drug Crime Convictions in Connecticut? Hartford Criminal Attorney Explains


All drug charges are serious, but the facts surrounding your arrest can have a profound impact on the potential outcomes of your case. Four factors, in particular, will determine the consequences of a conviction:

Marijuana  and Cannabis

  • Type of drugs;
  • Amount of drugs;
  • Location of the arrest;
  • And the reason you had the drugs.

Fortunately, depending on the facts of your arrest, it may be possible to structure a defense that convinces the court to reduce the charges or penalties, or to dismiss the case altogether. If you are facing drug charges in Connecticut, contact Melocowsky & Melocowsky to discuss your legal options.

A Hartford drug crime lawyer will investigate your arrest, gather evidence, and aggressively protect your interests. Our attorneys have been defending clients for more than 40 combined years, and we have the knowledge and resources to find success in court.

Call 860-633-6356 to schedule a free consultation. You can also learn more about criminal law in Connecticut by visiting USAttorneys.com.

If you are facing drug charges, these four factors can have a significant impact on the potential outcomes of your case:

  1. Type of Drugs

As the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection explains, the state has five schedules, or classifications, for controlled substances.  Schedule I drugs have the highest potential for abuse. Schedule V substances have the lowest potential for abuse.

Examples of Schedule I substances include mescaline and LSD. They cannot be prescribed by health-care professionals because they are considered to have no legitimate medical benefit. Schedule II substances are still highly regulated. The restrictions on Schedule III-V substances are less strict.

  1. Amount of Drugs

If police find you in possession of drugs, the amount will have a direct impact on the charges and penalties you face. For example, if you possess less than ½ ounce of marijuana, you could face a $150 fine. If you possess between ½ ounce and 4 ounces and it is your first offense, you could face up to one year in jail and a maximum $1,000 fine. If you possess 4 ounces or more, you could face up to five years behind bars and a maximum $2,000 fine.

  1. Location of the Arrest

If police charged you with possession of illegal drugs within 1,500 feet of a daycare center or school, then you could face a mandatory two-year jail sentence in addition to other penalties. You may face charges for possession of drugs within a school zone even if you did not realize you were near a school or daycare facility.

  1. Reason for Having the Drugs

If police charged you with selling, cultivating, or distributing a controlled substance, then you could face harsher penalties than those for possession. For example, you could face up to seven years in prison and fines for a first offense of distributing less than 1 kilogram of marijuana. If the amount is 1 kilogram or more, you could face five to 20 years in prison and fines.

If you are facing drug charges in Connecticut, contact Melocowsky & Melocowsky. A Hartford criminal attorney will evaluate your arrest and fight for a positive outcome of your case.

We have represented thousands of clients in drug cases, domestic assault cases, sexual assault cases, robbery and larceny cases, property claims, OUIs and homicide crimes. Call 860-633-6356 to schedule a free consultation.


Author: Steve Melocowsky

Steven I. Melocowsky is a founder of Melocowsky and Melocowsky. He provides legal commentary for local television stations such as FOX Ct News and WFSB regarding high profile criminal and civil trials.