A level 2 drug misdemeanor in Colorado is punishable by up to 12 months in county jail and/or $50 to $750 in fines. For unlawful drug use, courts typically grant probation and a $500 fine. Convictions can be sealed from your criminal record two years after the case ends.
In this article, our Colorado criminal defense attorneys discuss:
- 1. What are level 2 drug misdemeanors?
- 2. What is the sentence for level 2 drug misdemeanors in Colorado?
- 3. What are examples?
- 4. Can level 2 drug misdemeanors be sealed?
- 5. Are there deportation consequences?
- 6. Can I ask for a jury trial?
- 7. What is the criminal statute of limitations for level 2 drug misdemeanors?
- 8. Can I have a gun?
1. What are level 2 drug misdemeanors?
Colorado law subdivides drug misdemeanors into two tiers: level 1 to level 2. Level 2 drug misdemeanors are less serious than level 1 drug misdemeanors.
Both level 1- and 2 drug misdemeanors carry laxer penalties than drug felony convictions. But drug misdemeanors carry harsher penalties than drug petty offenses.1
2. What is the sentence for level 2 drug misdemeanors in Colorado?
Colorado penalties for level 2 drug misdemeanors include up to 12 months of jail time and/or $50 to $750 in fines.
As of March 1, 2020, the punishment for unlawful drug use is:
- Probation of up to 1 year;
- Possibly 120 days in jail; and
- Up to $500
But for a 3rd or subsequent offense, up to 180 days in jail2
You may be able to perform community service instead of paying a fine.
3. What are examples?
Common examples of level 2 drug misdemeanors in Colorado include:
- Abusing toxic vapors (CRS 18-18-412)
- Unlawful use of a controlled substance (CRS 18-18-404)
- Drug possession offense (CRS 18-18-403.5) of more than 2 ounces of marijuana but not more than 6 oz. (or up to 3 ounces of marijuana concentrate)
- Conspiracy (CRS 18-2-201) to commit a level 1 or 2 drug misdemeanor
- Attempt (CRS 19-2-101) to commit a level 1 or 2 drug misdemeanor
- Advertisement of drug paraphernalia (CRS 18-18-430)
See the state government’s official list of level 2 drug misdemeanors.
There are no extraordinary risk level 2 drug misdemeanors.
4. Can level 2 drug misdemeanors be sealed?
Yes. Colorado convictions of level 2 drug misdemeanors can be sealed from your record two years after the case ends. If the charge gets dismissed, then you can ask the court for a seal immediately.3
5. Are there deportation consequences?
Drug-related offenses are potentially deportable. Therefore, non-citizens who have been cited or arrested for drug offenses should hire an attorney. A lawyer may be able to get the charge dismissed or changed to a non-deportable offense.
Learn more about the criminal defense of immigrants in Colorado.4
6. Can I ask for a jury trial?
Yes. If a level 2 drug misdemeanor case does not settle in Colorado, then you can ask for a jury trial of six jurors. With the court’s approval, you may elect to have a bench trial instead or a smaller jury of no less than three people.5
7. What is the criminal statute of limitations for level 2 drug misdemeanors?
Colorado prosecutors have 18 months after the alleged offense to press level 2 drug misdemeanor charges. Learn more about criminal statutes of limitations in Colorado.6
8. Can I have a gun?
Federal law prohibits drug addicts or users from possessing guns.7 And drug users who try to buy a gun in Colorado face charges for illegal purchase of a firearm (CRS 18-12-111).
- Colorado Revised Statute 18-1.3-501; see also People v. Lucero, (2016, Court of Appeals of Colorado, Division Six) COA 105, 381 P.3d 436.
- Same; House Bill 19-1263 (new law); Uniform Controlled Substances Act (2013).
- CRS 24-72-701 – 708.
- 8 USC 1227.
- CRS 18-1-406.
- CRS 16-5-401.
- 18 USC 922; United States v. Seay, (8th Cir. 2010) 620 F.3d 919.