While many American states have accepted the nonmedical use of marijuana, Tennessee remains steadfastly against recreational drug use. As such, many of the items linked to the use and possession of drugs are also illegal. This means that you could face arrest if law enforcement catches you with paraphernalia.
Although possession of drug paraphernalia may seem like a minor offense, you could still face harsh penalties if convicted. Most paraphernalia offenses are charged as misdemeanors, but offenses in which the defendant passes paraphernalia on to minors will result in felony charges. In either case, building a strong criminal defense against paraphernalia possession charges is critical to minimize the possible consequences.
Even possessing ordinary household items can lead to an arrest if police officers link these items to drug use. For example, small spoons, plastic baggies and scales meant for use in the kitchen might be considered paraphernalia if they are found near drugs. Further, if you are already under arrest for marijuana possession and you admit that you use baggies to store the substance, your charges may increase.
Prosecutors in the state are typically aggressive in their efforts to convict a defendant on drug-related crimes, even paraphernalia possession. The actions you take in the wake of an arrest may make all the difference in the outcome of your case. If you leave the matter to chance you could face fines or imprisonment. However, if you pursue a criminal defense, there is every chance that the court will reduce or dismiss your charges.
Until Tennessee relaxes its stance on drug offenses, it is wise to understand the consequences of possessing, using and distributing items related to drug use. Knowing the state's drug laws makes you better equipped to avoid an accidental offense.