Is Owning Marijuana Plants a Felony in Ohio?

Ohio has joined several states in relaxing its marijuana laws, permitting the possession of marijuana plants with specific restrictions. This shift offers new freedoms to residents, but it comes with important boundaries. Possessing plants beyond the legal limit is not just a minor oversight – it can escalate to felony charges.

How Many Marijuana Plants Can You Legally Grow in Ohio?

With the passage of Issue 2 in November 2023, Ohio law now says an individual adult can grow up to six marijuana plants at home, while households with two or more adults aged 21 and over can grow up to 12 plants. However, there are some crucial restrictions to know to avoid potential legal trouble:

  • You must grow the plants in a secured closet, greenhouse, or other area that people under age 21 can’t access.
  • The area where you grow the plants can’t be visible from a public space.

As long as you follow these rules, you can grow marijuana at home without fear of legal consequences. It’s worth noting, however, that importing marijuana seeds remains illegal under both state and federal law. Be careful about where and how you get your seeds to avoid potential drug charges.

When Growing Marijuana Plants Becomes a Felony

A minor violation of Ohio’s home grow laws is a civil penalty, meaning you won’t face any jail time. However, growing double the legally allowed number of plants or more still qualifies as drug trafficking under state law. Trafficking marijuana is a fifth-degree felony, and the potential penalties include up to 12 months in prison. You could also face heavy fines and other penalties for a drug trafficking conviction. Make sure to follow the new home grow laws carefully to avoid severe legal repercussions.

What to Do if You Face Felony Marijuana Trafficking Charges

If you find yourself facing felony marijuana trafficking charges in Ohio for growing too many marijuana plants, it’s crucial to act swiftly and strategically. Here’s what you should do:

  • Contact a Lawyer Immediately – The first and most important step is to consult a lawyer who understands Ohio’s marijuana laws. They can provide legal advice tailored to your situation and help you understand your rights and options.
  • Stay Silent – Exercise your right to remain silent. Do not discuss your case with anyone but your lawyer, as the police and prosecutors can use anything you say against you in court.
  • Gather Documentation – Collect any documents or evidence related to your marijuana plants. This includes purchase records, licensing information (if applicable), and any correspondence regarding the cultivation.
  • Prepare for Court  Work closely with your attorney to prepare for court appearances. Your lawyer can help strategize your defense and potentially negotiate for lesser charges or reduced penalties depending on the circumstances.

The Akron drug crimes lawyers at DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder want you to have all the necessary information to avoid harsh drug charges. While Ohio may have loosened its marijuana laws, growing too many cannabis plants can still have significant consequences. If you are facing felony trafficking charges in Ohio, contact  DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder immediately for a free consultation.