Is simple Possession of Marijuana still a crime in Virginia?
Possession of marijuana is still a crime in Virginia. The most common way to get charged with possession of marijuana is if you're pulled over for a traffic violation and the officer claims to smell marijuana in your vehicle. In Virginia, smelling marijuana gives the officer the right to search your vehicle. It also does not matter about small the amount of marijuana is. You can be charged with simple possession of marijuana for residue.
What are the penalties for Possession of Marijuana?
A first offense carries the possibility of 30 days in jail and a $500 fine. A second offense is a class 1 misdemeanor which carries 12 months in jail and a $2,500 fine.
If you're charged with possession of marijuana and this would be your first conviction, you are probably eligible for the First Offender Program. The First Offender program allows the charge to be dismissed after you complete community service and substance abuse counseling.