Kansas Heroin Charges: The Penalties and How to Defend Yourself

The state of Kansas has enacted strict and severe penalties for defendants accused of using or trafficking heroin. If you’re arrested on Kansas heroin charges, you could be sentenced to up to 17 years in prison and fined $500,000.

But the sentencing could be much less severe, depending on the facts of the case and your criminal history. The state has created ways for defendants charged with drug crimes to avoid prison altogether. 

This is why it’s important to find an experienced drug attorney. A criminal defense attorney guides you through the legal process, ensures your rights are protected, and can help reduce or eliminate the charges.

Heroin possession charges in Kansas

Every type of heroin charge in Kansas is a felony. There is no such thing as misdemeanor heroin possession.

A heroin possession charge, commonly referred to as simple possession, is a level 5 felony. If convicted, you could go to prison anywhere from 10 to 42 months and pay a fine of up to $100,000. 

However, unlike higher-level felonies for heroin possession, you could avoid prison. Under Senate Bill 123, nonviolent defendants with no convictions for drug trafficking, manufacturing, or possession with intent to sell can qualify for substance abuse treatment and get probation.

Heroin distribution charges in Kansas

Possession with the intent to distribute heroin carries a potential for up to 17 years in prison and a $500,000 fine in Kansas. Conversely, the charges could result in prison time of just over a year. The amount of heroin is a significant factor in determining the level of felony. 

In Kansas, the charges for heroin distribution range from a level 4 felony up to a level 1 felony. A prosecutor will increase the charge by one level if the crime occurs within 1,000 feet of school property. 

Level 4 felony

You’ll be charged with a level 4 felony if arrested with less than a gram of heroin and you’re accused of intending to distribute the drug. If convicted, you could be sentenced to prison for 14 months to 51 months and fined a maximum of $300,000.

With a level 4 felony heroin charge, it’s possible to get probation if your criminal history is limited. However, if your criminal history is lengthier, it’s more likely you’ll get prison time.

Level 3 felony

If you’re caught with 1 gram to 3.5 grams of heroin, you’ll be charged with a level 3 felony. This level of felony carries the possibility of 46 months to 83 months in prison and a $300,000 maximum fine. 

Level 2 felony

In Kansas, if you’re charged with a level 2 felony, it means you are accused of possessing between 3.5 grams and 100 grams of heroin. You could be sentenced to prison for 92 months to 144 months and fined $500,000. 

Level 1 felony

If you’re accused of possessing over 100 grams of heroin in Kansas, it’s considered a level 1 felony. You could be sentenced anywhere between 138 months and 204 months in prison and fined $500,000.

How an attorney can help fight heroin charges

If you’ve been charged with heroin possession or distribution or any other drug crimes, immediately contact a criminal defense attorney. They’ll assist you throughout the legal process in several ways, including:

  • Analyzing your case: A criminal defense attorney will look over the evidence and assess the weaknesses in the charges against you. 
  • Determining possible defenses: They’ll develop potential defenses based on the weaknesses in the prosecutors’ case and strategies they’ve found successful in the past.
  • Applying the law accurately: An attorney can ensure the facts are applied correctly to your case, ensuring your constitutional rights are protected.
  • Navigating the legal process: Being charged with a crime can be overwhelming. An attorney can help guide you and make informed decisions that are in your best interest.

If you’ve been charged with heroin possession or distribution in Wichita, Kansas, or the surrounding areas, contact criminal defense attorney Jeremy D. Koop. As a former prosecutor and longtime defense attorney, he’s highly skilled in navigating the complexities of drug crimes and developing the most effective strategies.

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