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Louisiana lawmakers consider easing up on marijuana penalities

Louisiana is the latest state to consider taking a more relaxed approach to certain marijuana charges. A bill has cleared the House and next goes to the Senate that would reduce the maximum sentence for second-offense marijuana possession to two years from the current five years.

Additionally, the bill would reduce the maximum sentence for third-offense possession to five years from the current 20 years. Then, any additional convictions would result in a maximum prison sentence of eight years.

The sponsor of the bill said it attempts to begin "chipping away at Louisiana being the incarceration capital of the world," The Times-Picayune reported.

However, the maximum sentence for a first-time possession conviction would stay at the current six months possible jail time under the House bill that has been proposed.

A similar bill that has been proposed in the Senate seeks to lower penalties for possession of small amount of marijuana too. That bill would make possession of an ounce or less of marijuana or synthetic marijuana a misdemeanor.

It is good news that Louisiana lawmakers are seriously considering making changes to the laws so that people's lives are less likely to be derailed for marijuana charges.

It seems absurd that while some states have legalized recreational marijuana use, a person could get sent to prison for a lengthy period of time for possessing the drug in Louisiana.

As no changes have been made to the laws yet, it's extremely important to work with an experienced criminal defense lawyer after being charged with any marijuana-related offense to help avoid the harsh penalties that currently apply.

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Meet Attorney Guillory

Attorney Joshua S. Guillory was born in Alexandria, Louisiana. Upon graduating high school from Alexandria Senior High, he enrolled in classes at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree. Josh was a member of Mu Kappa Tau, a national honor society for marketing majors, while attending... Read More

Joshua S. Guillory

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