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What is Considered a Controlled Substance?

Criminal Law
Drug Offenses
What is Considered a Controlled Substance?

 The law regarding controlled substances in the state of Indiana can be complex and difficult to understand for some. However, it’s important to know what constitutes a controlled substance and what the potential consequences are if you’re caught in possession of one or if you’re convicted of a related crime. Whether you’re a resident of Indiana or plan on visiting the state, this blog will provide you with the necessary information on controlled substances, classifications, possession of paraphernalia, and more.

What is Considered a Controlled Substance?

A controlled substance is a drug or chemical whose use or distribution is regulated by the government, which aims to limit the risk of abuse, addiction, and dependence. In Indiana, controlled substances are categorized into five schedules based on their potential for abuse, their accepted medical use, and their level of dependence risk. For instance, Schedule I drug such as heroin or LSD have a high potential for abuse, no accepted medical use, and severe psychological or physical dependence. Meanwhile, Schedule V drugs such as cough medicines like Robitussin contain limited quantities of certain narcotics and have a low potential for abuse.

Classification of Controlled Substances in Indiana

The classification of controlled substances in Indiana follows the federal classification as established under the Controlled Substances Act, but it includes additional substances that are commonly abused in the state. Schedule I drugs are considered the most dangerous drugs and have no acceptable use in medical treatment. Schedule II drugs have a high potential for abuse, but they also have recognized medical uses when used properly, such as opioids like morphine or fentanyl. Schedules III, IV, and V include substances that have decreasing potentials for abuse and dependence. Possession of any controlled substance without a valid prescription is a crime in Indiana, and the severity of the charge depends on the schedule of the controlled substance.

Possession of Paraphernalia

Possession of drug paraphernalia refers to equipment or materials that are used to manufacture, package, or consume controlled substances. This can include pipes, bongs, syringes, scales, rolling papers, or any other item that the police suspect has been used to process or use drugs. Possession of drug paraphernalia is considered a misdemeanor in Indiana, and a conviction can result in a sentence of up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $5,000. Additionally, possession of drug paraphernalia can be used as evidence to establish possession or distribution of a controlled substance.

Sentences for Felony and Misdemeanor Convictions in Indiana

If you’re convicted of a drug-related felony in Indiana, the sentence may include a prison sentence, hefty fines, and a permanent criminal record. The length of the sentence depends on the gravity of the offense, the drug involved, the amount of the drug, and your criminal record. A misdemeanor drug possession charge can also carry serious consequences, including up to one year in jail and fines. In addition, a conviction will remain on your criminal record and can affect your personal and professional life.

Controlled substances are tightly regulated in Indiana, and possessing one illegally or committing a related crime can have lasting impacts on your life. It’s important to understand what drugs are considered controlled substances and how they’re classified to avoid any potential legal troubles. If you have questions or are facing legal charges related to controlled substances, it’s wise to consult an experienced attorney who can guide you through the legal process and offer you the best defense possible. Always remember to obey the law, and if you’re worried about addiction or abuse, there are numerous resources available in Indiana to help.

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