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Colorado Laws & Penalties

Offense Penalty Incarceration   Max. Fine  

Possession

Personal Use

1 oz or less* No Penalty None $ 0
Transfer of 1 oz or less for no remuneration* No Penalty None $ 0
More than 1 - 2 oz Petty Offense None $ 100
Open and public displays or uses of 2 oz or less Petty Offense None $ 100
More than 2 - 6 oz Misdemeanor 0 - 12 months $ 700
More than 6 - 12 oz Misdemeanor 6 - 18 months $ 5,000
More than 12 oz Felony 1 - 2 years $ 100,000
* By persons 21 years of age or older.

With Intent to Distribute

Possession of 8 oz or more is considered possession with the intent to distribute will enhance the sentence.

Sale or Distribution

4 oz or less Misdemeanor 6 - 18 months $ 5,000
More than 4 oz – 12 oz Felony 6 months - 2 years $ 100,000
More than 12 oz – 5 lbs Felony 2 - 6 years $ 500,000
More than 5 lbs – 50 lbs Felony 4 - 16 years $ 750,000
More than 50 lbs Felony 8 - 32 years $ 1,000,000
Sale to a minor has a greater penalty. See details for information.

Cultivation

6 plants or fewer* No Penalty None $ 0
6 - 30 plants Felony 6 months - 2 years $ 100,000
More than 30 plants Felony 2 - 6 years $ 500,000
* By persons 21 years of age or older.

Hash & Concentrates

Possession

1 oz or less* No Penalty None $ 0
1 - 3 oz Misdemeanor 6 - 18 months $ 5,000
More than 3 oz Felony 6 months - 2 years $ 100,000

Distribute, Transfer, or Possess with Intent

2 oz or less Misdemeanor 6 - 18 months $ 5,000
More than 2 oz – 6 oz Felony 6 months - 2 years $ 100,000
More than 6 oz – 2.5 lbs Felony 2 - 6 years $ 500,000
More than 2.5 lbs – 25 lbs Felony 4 - 16 years $ 750,000
More than 25 lbs Felony 8 - 32 years $ 1,000,000
* By persons 21 years of age or older.
Sale, Transfer or Dispense to a minor has a greater penalty. See details for information.

Paraphernalia

Possession of paraphernalia Petty Offense N/A $ 100

Penalty Details

Possession for Personal Use

Private possession by persons 21 years of age or older of up to one ounce is no penalty. Private cultivation of up to six marijuana plants, with no more than three being mature is no penalty. Transfer of one ounce or less for no remuneration is no penalty.

See

  • Colo. Const. Art. XVIII, Section 16(3)

Possession of more than 1 - 2 ounces is a drug petty offense that is punishable by a maximum fine of $100. The offender will be summoned and a court appearance is mandatory. Failure to appear in court is a Class 3 misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a fine of up to $750.

Possession of more than 2 to 6 ounces of marijuana is a level 2 drug misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1-year imprisonment and a fine not to exceed $700.

Possession of more than 6 ounces to 12 ounces is a level 1 drug misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to eighteen months of imprisonment and a fine of $500 - $5000.

Possession of more than 12 ounces is a level 4 drug felony which is punishable by 6 months - 2 years of imprisonment, as well as a fine between $1,000-$100,000.

One who openly and publicly displays, uses, or consumes 2 ounces of marijuana or less is guilty of a drug petty offense and may be subject to24 hours of community service as well as a maximum fine of $100.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • §§ 18-18-406(4), (5)

Possession with Intent to Distribute

Possession of 8 ounces of marijuana or more is a lesser-included offense of possession with the intent to distribute. Each element of the possession offense is included except the quantity, which is a sentence enhancer, not an essential element of the offense.

See

  • People v. Garcia, 251 P.3d 1152 (Colo. App. 2010).

Sale or Distribution

Transfer of one ounce or less for no remuneration by persons 21 years of age or older is no penalty.

See

  • Colo. Const. Art. XVIII, Section 16

Retail sales of cannabis by state-licensed entities to those over the age of 21 are regulated in this state. Marijuana sales by unlicensed entities remain subject to criminal penalties.

The sale of 4 ounces or less of marijuana is a level 1 drug misdemeanor punishable by 6-18 months imprisonment as well as a fine between $500-$5,000.

The sale of more than 4 ounces, but not more than 12 ounces of marijuana is a level 4 drug felony and punishable by a sentence of 6 months - 2 years and a fine of $ 1,000 - $ 100,000.

The sale of more than 12 ounces but not more than 5 pounds of marijuana is a level 3 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 2 - 6 years and a fine of $ 2,000 - $ 500,000.

The sale of more than 5 pounds but not more than 50 pounds of marijuana is a level 2 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 4 - 16 years and a fine of $ 3,000 - $ 750,000.

The sale of more than 50 pounds of marijuana is a level 1 drug felony and punishable by a sentence of 8 - 32 years and a fine of $ 5,000 - $ 1,000,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • § 18-18-406(2)(b)
To a Minor:

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of not more than 1 ounce of marijuana to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 4 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 6 months - 2 years and a fine of $ 1,000 - $ 100,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than one ounce, but not more than six ounces of marijuana to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 3 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 2 - 6 years and a fine of $ 2,000 - $ 500,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than 6 ounces, but not more than 2.5 pounds of marijuana to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 2 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 4 - 16 years and a fine of $ 3,000 - $ 750,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than 2.5 pounds of marijuana to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 1 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 8 - 32 years and a fine of $ 5,000 - $ 1,000,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • § 18-18-406(1)

Cultivation

There is no penalty in Colorado for persons who privately cultivate up to 6 marijuana plants, with no more than 3 being mature.

See

  • Colo. Const. Art. XVIII, Section 16(3)

The cultivation of 6 plants or fewer is a level 1 drug misdemeanor punishable by 6-18 months imprisonment as well as a fine between $500-$5,000, if not at least 21 years of age.

The cultivation of more than 6 but not more than 30 plants is a level 4 drug felony punishable by 6 months - 2 imprisonment as well as a fine between $1,000-$100,000.

The cultivation of more than 30 plants is a level 3 drug felony punishable by 2-6 years imprisonment as well as a fine between $2,000-$500,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • 18-18-406(3) of the Colorado Revised Statutes

Hash & Concentrates

Private possession by persons 21 years of age or older of up to one ounce is no penalty.

See

  • Colo. Const. Art. XVIII, Section 16

Possession of more than 1 - 3 ounces of hashish or extracts is a level 1 misdemeanor punishable by a fine between $500 and $5,000 dollars and/or a term of imprisonment between 6 and 18 months.

Possession of more than 3 ounces of marijuana concentrate commits a level 4 drug felony punishable by 6 months - 2 years imprisonment as well as a fine between $1,000-$100,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • § 18-18-406(4)
Sale:

The sale of 2 ounces or less of marijuana concentrate is a level 1 drug misdemeanor punishable by 6 -18 months imprisonment as well as a fine between $500-$5,000.

The sale of more than 2 ounces - 6 ounces of marijuana concentrate is a level 4 drug felony punishable by 6 months -2 years imprisonment as well as a fine between $1,000-$100,000.

The sale of more than 6 ounces - 2.5 pounds of marijuana concentrate is a level 3 drug felony punishable by 2 - 6 years imprisonment as well as a fine between $5,000-$500,000.

The sale of more than 2.5 - 25 pounds is a level 2 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 4 - 16 years and a fine of $ 3,000 - $ 750,000.

The sale of more than 25 pounds is a level 1 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 8 - 32 years and a fine of $ 5,000 - $ 1,000,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • § 18-18-406(2)(b)
Sale to a Minor:

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than 1 pound of marijuana concentrate to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 1 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 8 - 32 years and a fine of $ 5,000 - $ 1,000,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than 3 ounces, but not more than 1 pound of marijuana concentrate to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 2 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 4 - 16 years and a fine of $ 5,000 - $ 750,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of more than .5 ounces, but not more than 3 ounces, of marijuana concentrate to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 3 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 2 - 6 years and a fine of $ 2,000 - $ 500,000.

The sale, transfer, or dispensing of not more than .5 ounces of marijuana concentrate to a minor if the person is an adult and two years older than the minor is a level 4 drug felony punishable by a sentence of 6 months - 2 years and a fine of $ 1,000 - $ 100,000.

See

  • § 18-1.3-401.5
  • § 18-1.3-501
  • § 18-18-406(1)

Paraphernalia

Possession of paraphernalia is a drug petty offense that is punishable by a fine of up to $100.

See

  • § 18-18-428 of the Colorado Revised Statutes
Conditional Release

The state allows conditional release or alternative or diversion sentencing for people facing their first prosecutions. Usually, conditional release lets a person opt for probation rather than trial. After successfully completing probation, the individual's criminal record does not reflect the charge.

Decriminalization

The state has decriminalized marijuana to some degree. Typically, decriminalization means no prison time or criminal record for first-time possession of a small amount for personal consumption. The conduct is treated like a minor traffic violation.

Drugged Driving

This state has a per se drugged driving law enacted. In their strictest form, these laws forbid drivers from operating a motor vehicle if they have a detectable level of an illicit drug or drug metabolite (i.e., compounds produced from chemical changes of a drug in the body, but not necessarily psychoactive themselves) present in their bodily fluids above a specific, state-imposed threshold. Further information about cannabinoids and their impact on psychomotor performance is available here. Additional information regarding cannabinoids and proposed per se limits is available here.

Hemp

This state has an active hemp industry or has authorized research. Hemp is a distinct variety of the plant species cannabis sativa L. that contains minimal (less than 1%) amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Various parts of the plant can be utilized in the making of textiles, paper, paints, clothing, plastics, cosmetics, foodstuffs, insulation, animal feed, and other products. For more information see NORML's Industrial Use section.

Legalization

This state has legalized marijuana for personal use.

Medical Marijuana

This state has medical marijuana laws enacted. Modern research suggests that cannabis is a valuable aid in the treatment of a wide range of clinical applications. These include pain relief, nausea, spasticity, glaucoma, and movement disorders. Marijuana is also a powerful appetite stimulant and emerging research suggests that marijuana's medicinal properties may protect the body against some types of malignant tumors, and are neuroprotective. For more information see NORML's Medical Marijuana section.