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Heroin Possession in Texas

Heroin is an opioid drug made from morphine. Heroin is developed from the seed of an opium poppy plant. Once it is produced the final product typically takes the form of a white or brown powder or a black sticky material commonly referred to as black tar heroin. Heroin is one of the most addictive drugs available on the street. Many users don’t intend to get addicted to heroin. Often times these addictions begin in the most innocent way – prescription pain medication. Since heroin is made from morphine users will resort to cheaper or more affordable highs than that of prescription pain medication. Heroin has a similar high to prescription drugs like OxyContin and Vicodin and users often report abusing pain medication prior to seeking out a cheaper more dangerous alternative.

Heroin (also commonly referred by various slang terms such as “dope,” “smack,” “tar,” or “brown sugar,” among others) is listed under Penalty Group 1 of the Texas Health and Safety Code. As a result, any criminal offense involving heroin is subject to severe penalties compared to other drug crimes. Possession, delivery and manufacturing heroin are prosecuted very seriously.

Criminal Defense Attorney for Heroin Arrests in Fort Worth, TX

Were you arrested for any kind of alleged heroin crime in the greater DFW area? Do not say anything to authorities without legal representation Contact Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC as soon as possible.

 

Andrea Townsend, Steven Gebhardt, and Brian Eppes are criminal defense lawyers in Fort Worth who represent clients charged with illegal drug offenses in such communities in Tarrant County, Parker County, and Johnson County as Fort Worth, Weatherford, Arlington, Cleburne, and many others. Call 817-502-3600 today to receive a free initial consultation that will allow out attorneys to provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case.

Overview of Heroin Crimes in Tarrant County

  • What are the consequences for different types of heroin offenses?
  • What does it mean to possess heroin with intent to deliver and how could I be convicted of this offense?
  • Where can I learn more about heroin in Fort Worth?

Heroin Penalties in Texas

Under Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.115, possession of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1 such as heroin prosecuted depending on the amount of heroin the alleged offender is accused of possessing:

 

  • Less Than 1 Gram — State jail felony punishable by up to two years in county jail and/or a fine of up to $10,000;

 

  • 1 Gram or More, But Less Than 4 Grams — Third-degree felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000;

 

  • 4 Grams or More, But Less Than 200 Grams — Second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000; or

 

  • 200 Grams or More, But Less Than 400 Grams — First-degree felony punishable by up to 99 years or life in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000; or

 

  • 400 Grams or More — Enhanced first-degree felony punishable by minimum of 10 years up to 99 years or life in prison and/or a fine of up to $100,000.

 

The manufacture, delivery, or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1 is prohibited under Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.112. When an alleged offender is accused of this crime, the penalties for these offense are increased dramatically:

 

  • Less Than 1 Gram — State jail felony punishable by up to two years in county jail and/or a fine of up to $10,000;

 

  • 1 Gram or More, But Less Than 4 Grams — Second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000;

 

  • 4 Grams or More, But Less Than 200 Grams — First-degree felony punishable by up to 99 years or life in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000; or

 

  • 200 Grams or More, But Less Than 400 Grams — Enhanced first-degree felony punishable by minimum of 10 years up to 99 years or life in prison and/or a fine of up to $100,000; or

 

  • 400 Grams or More — Enhanced first-degree felony punishable by minimum of 15 years up to 99 years or life in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

 

Prosecutors and police officers will also use Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.134 to increase the potential consequences of possession of a controlled substance. This section of the code known as a “Drug-Free Zone” increase the punishment for an alleged offender. These drug-free zones include areas such as school, arcades, youth centers, etc. If an alleged offender possess heroin or another controlled substance within 1000 feet of a drug-free zone, they are looking at lengthier sentences. Offenses that are otherwise a State jail felony are prosecuted as a third degree felony. Offenses that are identified as a second-degree felony are prosecuted as a first-degree felony using this drug-free zone enhancement. Not only are the punishment ranges increased, a sentence under this section may not run concurrently with a sentence on another crime.

Possession of Heroin with intent to deliver arrests in Tarrant County

The manufacture or delivery of a controlled substance listed in Penalty Group 1 governed by Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.112 is commonly referred to as “intent to deliver.” Every case is fact specific but there are certain elements law enforcement will point to prove this intent to deliver. Prosecutors look to factors such as large amounts of cash, baggies, digital scales, weapons, and possessing a variety of drugs or controlled substances to prove this element.

An alleged offender can be prosecuted under this section merely on a hunch from law enforcement. An alleged offender does not have to actually manufacture or deliver heroin or a controlled substance to be prosecuted under this section of the Texas Health and Safety Code. If a prosecutors believes they are justified in acting under this section of the code they will. As we have seen above this intent to deliver increases the range of punishment and is a powerful tool in the District Attorney’s office arsenal.

 

Texas Resources for Heroin Offenses

Narcotics Anonymous – Narcotics Anonymous was born from the Alcoholics Anonymous organization. Narcotics Anonymous or “NA” is a nonprofit organization for men and women that are suffering with addiction from a controlled substance. Regular meetings are attended and the goal of the program is to treat addiction rather than a specific drug. The twelve step method is used to overcome addiction. NA is one of the largest organizations world-wide geared to help those overcome addiction. Visit the website above to learn more about this organization and join a group closer to you.

Substance Abuse Trends in Texas: June 2015 — The Addiction Research Institute (ARI) focuses on issues related to substance use disorder prevalence, treatment, and long-term healthy functioning free from addictions. As this June 2015 paper from the ARI notes, heroin users are becoming younger as well as a 352 percent increase in heroin seizures on the Western part of the border in Texas, due in large part to the Mexican heroin drug trade. For more information clink on the link.

Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC | Fort Worth Heroin Defense Lawyer

If you were arrested in the DFW area for any kind of alleged heroin crime, it will be in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel. Townsend, Gebhardt & Eppes, PLLC can fight to possibly get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed.

 

Fort Worth criminal defense attorneys Andrea Townsend, Steven Gebhardt, and Brian Eppes aggressively defend individuals in Cleburne, Fort Worth, Weatherford, Arlington, and several other surrounding areas of Tarrant County, Parker County, and Johnson County. They can review your case and help you understand all of your legal options when you call 817-502-3600 or complete an online form to schedule a free, confidential consultation.