Possession or Cultivation - Brief Survey of Marijuana Offenses

In Washington, there are basically three different marijuana offenses you can be charged with.

  1. Possession of Marijuana - Less than 40 Grams. This is a simple misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $1000.00 fine. There is a minimum penalty of one day in jail which the Court must impose if you are found guilty of this offense.
  2. Possession of Marijuana over 40 grams - this offense is a Class “C” felony, no matter how much marijuana is involved. This offense carries a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
  3. Manufacture, Deliver, or Possess with Intent to Deliver Marijuana - simply put, these charges can be based on cultivation of pot, selling or giving it to another person, or possessing pot with the intention of delivering it to others. To be charged with “Manufacture”, the plants being grown can be seedlings or fully mature, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re growing 5 or 500. It also doesn’t matter whether you grow them for personal use or distribution. This is also a Class C Felony.
  4. Possession of Drug Paraphrenalia - this is not a crime under state law, but most counties and cities have ordinances or codes making this a misdemeanor, with a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail. This usually comes up when you’re found in possession of a pipe during a traffic stop or a bong if you’re arrested in your home. The fines vary from court to court.


Unless you were just browsing around for good information about marijuana and marijuana busts, you’re no doubt here because it’s already too late, you’ve either just been released by the cops or you’re looking at a citation or summons to appear in court for a marijuana offense. Believe me, I can feel your pain, it’s happened to me!!