(719) 328-1616

Drug Crimes

Colorado is one of the most progressive states in the country when it comes to drug laws. In 2013, the state of Colorado introduced a new Uniform Controlled Substances Act, which relied more on treating drug offenders rather than incarcerating them. However, this doesn’t mean Colorado doesn’t prosecute drug crimes. You could still be charged with a drug level misdemeanor or felony for using, manufacturing or possessing a controlled substance.

If you or someone you know has been charged with a drug-related offense, it’s imperative you have legal counsel. The controlled substance laws in Colorado are some of the most confusing in the nation. It’s important you’re prepared and armed with a strong defense before entering the court room.

Drug Crime Lawyer in Colorado Springs, CO

It’s illegal in Colorado to possess, use or manufacture controlled substances. While the state tends to focus on rehabilitation, that doesn’t mean a drug conviction is anything to laugh about. If you or someone you know has been arrested for a drug offense, it’s crucial you have legal representation.

The attorneys at Law Offices of Clifton Black, P.C. excel at criminal defense, especially drug-related crimes. We can pursue every angle of the case to have your charges reduced or dropped.

The attorneys at Law Offices of Clifton Black, P.C. have represented numerous clients that are accused of various types of drug offenses in Colorado Springs, Denver, Littleton and other Colorado courts.  Charges for drug offenses can include a wide variety of charges including:

  • Possession of a controlled substance (possession of drugs)
  • Distribution of a controlled substance (distribution or sale of drugs)
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Possession with intent to manufacture, cultivate, or distribute
  • Unlawful use of a controlled substance
  • Medical marijuana charges
  • Conspiracy to possess, distribute, or cultivate drugs
  • Juvenile drug offenses
  • Gang-related drug offenses

The attorneys at Law Offices of Clifton Black, P.C. have represented people charge with various drugs including:

  • Cocaine
  • Meth, Methamphetamine
  • Heroin
  • Prescription drugs, narcotics, anti-depressants, pain killers, sleeping pills
  • Marijuana
  • Psilocybin Mushrooms (magic mushrooms)
  • Spice
  • Inhalants

Call (719) 328-1616 now to schedule a consultation. Law Offices of Clifton Black, P.C. practices law throughout the greater Colorado Springs area including Manitou Springs, Fountain and Calhan.


Overview of Drug Crimes in Colorado


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What Drugs Are Legal and Illegal in Colorado?

Colorado is known for its progressive stance on drugs. The state has legalized the possession and use of marijuana for those who are 21 or older. However, certain circumstances such as possessing marijuana underaged can lead to criminal charges. All other controlled substances in Colorado are grouped by drug schedules. The penalties for possession, use or manufacture of these drugs depend on what schedule they’re under.

Colorado groups its controlled substances based on its potential for abuse and if it has a medical purpose. Listed below are the drug schedules found under Colorado law.

  • Schedule V – Drugs have a low potential for abuse relative to the other groups. Many of the drugs found under schedule V have a currently accepted use in the United States.
    • Some examples of schedule V drugs include medicine with small amounts of narcotics such as over-the-counter cough syrups and cold medications.
  • Schedule IV – Controlled substances that have little possibility of abuse and have some uses in medicine are under schedule IV.
    • Some examples of schedule IV drugs include anti-anxiety medications such as diazepam (Valium) and non-barbiturate sleep medications such as Ambien.
  • Schedule III – Drugs with a mid to low potential for abuse are under schedule III.
    • Examples of schedule III drugs include ketamine, anabolic steroids and medications containing a small amount of codeine.
  • Schedule II – Illegal substances that have a high chance of physical or chemical dependency are located under Schedule II. Many schedule II drugs are used in medicine but can lead to addiction in some cases.
    • Some examples of schedule II drugs include cocaine, fentanyl, morphine, oxycodone (OxyContin), methamphetamines, and hydrocodone (Vicodin).

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Colorado Penalties for Drug Possession

Conviction for possessing a controlled substance is a serious matter. Title 18 Article 18 Part 4 of the Colorado Revised Statutes (18-18-403.5 C.R.S.) states it’s unlawful to knowingly possess a controlled substance.

The penalties for possessing a controlled substance in Colorado depend on the type of drug. If the substance is found under schedule III, IV or V, you will be charged with a level 1 drug misdemeanor, which is punishable by:

  • Up to 18 months in jail; and
  • A fine of up to $5,000

Possessing a schedule I or II controlled substance will result in a class 4 drug felony. The penalties associated with a class 4 drug felony include:

  • Up to 12 months in prison; and
  • A fine of up to $100,000

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Colorado Penalties for Using a Controlled Substance

Colorado is unique because it also has statutes for the unlawful use of a controlled substance. 18-18-404 of C.R.S states it’s illegal to use a controlled substance unless it was lawfully administered, prescribed or dispensed to you for a medical reason. This crime doesn’t include the use of marijuana or THC concentrates.

Unlawful use of a controlled substance is a level 2 drug misdemeanor, which is punishable by:

  • Up to 12 months in jail; and
  • A fine of up to $750

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Penalties for Sale or Manufacture of Drugs in Colorado

Selling, dispensing, manufacturing or possessing with intent to distribute a controlled substance is illegal in Colorado. This doesn’t include the sale of marijuana or marijuana concentrates. The crime is a level 1 drug misdemeanor if the violation involves:

  • A schedule V controlled substance; or
  • Distributes four grams of a schedule II or a schedule IV controlled substance with no remuneration during the exchange

A level 1 drug misdemeanor could result in:

  • Up to 18 months in jail; and
  • A fine of up to $5,000

The crime could be enhanced to a level 4 drug felony if:

  • The crime involved no more than four grams of a schedule II or schedule IV substance;
  • You transferred no more than four grams of a schedule I or II controlled substance or two grams of heroin, ketamine or cathinone for the purpose of consuming the drug with another person

A level 4 drug felony can lead to:

  • Up to 12 months in prison; and
  • A fine of up to $100,000

A sale or manufacturing offense can be elevated to a level 3 drug felony if you were attempting to sell, dispense or manufacture the following:

  • No more than 14 grams of a schedule I or a schedule II controlled substance;
  • No more than 7 grams of a controlled substance containing either methamphetamine, heroin, ketamine or cathinone;
  • No more than ten milligrams of a substance containing flunitrazepam; or
  • More than 4 grams of a schedule II or schedule IV controlled substance

If convicted of a class 3 felony, your penalties will be:

  • Up to 4 years in prison; and
  • A fine of up to $500,000

Selling or manufacturing drugs is a level 2 drug felony if the crime involves:

  • More than 14 grams, but no more than 225 grams of a schedule I or schedule II controlled substance;
  • More than 7 grams, but no more than 12 grams of a substance containing ketamine, heroin, methamphetamine or cathinone; or
  • More than 10 milligrams, but no more than 50 milligrams of a substance containing flunitrazepam

If the offense involved any of the following, it could be enhanced to a level 1 drug felony.

  • More than 225 grams of a schedule I or II controlled substance;
  • More than 112 grams of a substance containing heroin, cathinone, ketamine or methamphetamines; or
  • More than 50 milligrams of a substance containing flunitrazepam

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Additional Resources

Marijuana Information & Resources in CO – Visit the official website of the Colorado Department of Health and Environment. Access the site to learn more about how marijuana is treated in Colorado, when it’s a crime to use cannabis and retail marijuana information.

Uniform Controlled Substances Act of 2013 – Visit the official website for the Colorado Revised Statutes to learn more about how they prosecute people who use, possess or sell drugs. Look over the statutes to learn more about recreational marijuana, medical cannabis, illegal controlled substances and possession of drug paraphernalia.


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Defense Lawyer for Drug Offenses in El Paso County, CO

If you or someone you know has been charged with possessing, using or selling drugs, you must take action now. A drug crime in Colorado can still end in serious consequences including potential incarceration. You can plan ahead now by contacting an experienced drug crimes attorney.

Call us now at (719) 328-1616 to schedule a free consultation. Our team will answer all your legal questions to the best of our ability and offer to chart you a defense plan. Contact us now at (719) 328-1616 to set up an appointment. We accept clients throughout the greater El Paso County area including surrounding counties such as Denver County and Arapahoe County.


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Law Offices of Clifton Black, P.C.