The U.S. Department of Justice under Jeff Sessions will do more to enforce federal marijuana laws, according to White House press secretary Sean Spicer.
How will this affect people in Tennessee? While possession of marijuana is not legal anywhere in Tennessee, visitors to federal parks and buildings may expect more aggressive enforcement of existing laws.
What are the penalties for possession of marijuana?
Possession of any amount of marijuana on federal property is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Federal marijuana laws apply to all federal property in Tennessee, including Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area and Great Smoky Mountains National Park, as well as national cemeteries, historic sites and scenic trails.
Tennessee's marijuana laws are harsher than those of the federal government. The penalties for possession of one half ounce or less of marijuana is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a $2,500 fine for a first offense. Possession of more than half an ounce is a felony.
Even if you serve no jail time, the long-term effect of a drug conviction can be devastating. Here are just a few of the ways a drug conviction could affect you:
- Your driver's license could be suspended
- You could find it harder to find a job
- You could be barred from certain careers
- You would be ineligible for federal student loans
The law firm of Hindman & Associates defends people who are charged with marijuana possession in state and federal courts in Tennessee. In many cases, we can resolve the charges without a criminal conviction.