What Is Possession of Drugs in the Second Degree in Kentucky?

November 5th, 2018 by Attorney Dan Carman

What Is Possession of Drugs in the Second Degree in Kentucky?

Possession of drugs in the second degree in Kentucky involves possession of dangerous, but not narcotic, drugs. It can include possession of prescription drugs or illegal drugs for which there can be no prescriptions. The penalty is the same as for possession in the third degree.

Under Kentucky law, possession of controlled substance in second degree is defined as the knowing and unlawful possession of a controlled substance classified in Schedules I or II which is not a narcotic drug (or specified in the definition of possession in the first degree), or a controlled substance classified in Schedule III (but not synthetic drugs, salvia or marijuana).

A narcotic drug was originally defined as any drug derived from opium or opium-like compounds with potent pain-relieving effects. They can significantly change a person’s mood and behavior and have a potential for dependence and tolerance (over time more of the drug is needed to produce the same effect).

More recently, narcotic has been defined as any drug, synthetic or naturally occurring, with effects similar to those of opium and opium derivatives, including meperidine, fentanyl and their derivatives.

Possession of a controlled substance in the second degree is a Class A misdemeanor. That carries penalties of a fine of $500, up to one year in jail, or both.

Schedules are classifications of drugs under federal law. Schedule I includes drugs and other substances that have a high potential for abuse, have no currently accepted medical treatment use in the U.S. and are not safe to use even under medical supervision. They can’t be obtained through a prescription and aren’t readily available for clinical use.

Schedule I drugs include: heroin, LSD, marijuana, mescaline (or peyote), MDMA (or ecstasy), GHB,  psilocybin, synthetic marijuana and analogs (spice, K2), methaqualone (Quaalude), Khat (Cathinone) and bath salts (synthetic stimulants).

Schedule II drugs have a high potential for abuse. They have a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the U.S. or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. Abuse of the drug may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.

Schedule III drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a moderate to low potential for physical and psychological dependence.

Though a class A misdemeanor isn’t the toughest penalty one can face under Kentucky criminal law, a conviction could cause you major trouble currently and in your future.

  • If you’re sentenced to jail time, would you be able to miss that time from work and still keep your job?
  • Having a criminal record can prohibit you from obtaining a wide range of jobs, prevent you from serving in the military, rent an apartment or obtain life insurance.
  • It can also impact your relationship with family members, friends and in your community.

If you have been charged with second-degree drug possession in Kentucky, you need a criminal defense attorney who can protect your rights and your future. Contact us today so you can discuss your situation with one of the attorneys at the Lexington, Kentucky-based Carman Law Firm. As criminal defense attorneys with years of experience, we offer thorough, experienced representation.