Possession of Concentrated THC Results in Felony Charge

May 31, 2019

Possession of concentrated THC results in felony charge

Media Contact: Makayla Chancey, PIO

With the popularity and usage of e-cigarettes on the rise, it’s important to understand that being in possession of any amount of concentrated THC, without a valid prescription, is a felony charge.

We’ve had several incidents over the past few months regarding juveniles, especially those in high school, being charged with felonies due to them having e-cigarettes containing THC cartridges.

While being in possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana is a first degree misdemeanor and can result in up to one year in jail or one year probation and a $1,000 fine, under Florida Statute 893.13(6)(a), it’s a third degree felony to possess any amount of concentrated THC. Even if the total weight of the substance is less than 20 grams, penalties can still include up to five years in prison, five years probation and a $5,000 fine.

The difference in the charges is due to the concentration of the liquid being so much more potent with THC rather than a typical marijuana plant. On average, high-quality cannabis, at the most, contains 30% THC, while cartridges containing concentrated THC can be as high as 91%. The amount of marijuana used to extract that much THC would be much more than 20 grams.

These cartridges are commercially made and packaged, so to the common individual, it might look like a regular e-cigarette cartridge. There’s also not a difference in the sight or smell of concentrated THC compared to regular e-cigarette liquid.

Parents and Guardians, if you notice your child being in possession of an e-cigarette cartridge, don’t automatically assume it’s legal; it could contain THC.

It’s also important to be aware of common verbiage and slang associated with e-cigarettes. Phrases include vape, vaping, vape sticks, Juul, Juuling, e-smoke, e-hookah, e-liquid, e-juice and carts, just to name a few.

If you’ve found cartridges containing a liquid substance and want to make sure your child is not consuming THC, you can purchase an at-home drug test kit at most local pharmacies and conduct the test yourself to ensure your child is not using this product.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this topic, please don’t hesitate to contact the Hardee County Sheriff’s Office at (863) 773-0304.