Misdemeanor – Diversion for First – Time Possession of Marijuana

Several jurisdictions around the Kansas City metro follow diversion for the first-time misdemeanor possession of marijuana. Diversion includes a series of requirements that must be met by the first-time offender including probation for up to year; possible treatment and drug awareness classes, fees, random urine tests, meetings with a monitor, and no additional offenses during the agreement.  The various fees and tests could add up to $1000 or more.


Diversion is a welcome option to avoid a criminal record.



A second-time offender who possesses marijuana could face escalated felony. A felony is automatically charged for possession with intent to distribute – even if distribution is sharing the substance with a friend. With the current federal system, jail time is a given; the length of the term is decided by all of the factors in a particular case. For example:


Substance Amount Mandatory prison term

Level 4 < 25 grams 14 – 51 months

Level 3 25 – 450 grams 46 – 83 months

Level 2 450 grams – 30 kilograms 92 – 144 months

Level 1 30 kilograms or more 138 – 204 months


These examples of prison terms show how wide a particular sentence could be – and how important it is for appropriate and competent counsel on your behalf.