When it comes to Texas drug possession laws, the potential punishments for a conviction are as tough as any state in the country. Just how severe the punishment will be depends on the type of controlled substance as well as the amount you are alleged to have possessed. In Texas, the penalty for possession of ecstasy can potentially cost you a lifetime in prison. The steep consequences of an ecstasy drug possession case are primarily due to the fact that the drug has no medicinal purpose.
If you have been arrested for possession of ecstasy in Texas, you are facing the potential of spending the rest of your life as a convicted felon. Avoiding a conviction altogether is your best possible outcome, and it is an outcome that attorney Doug Murphy has obtained for many of his clients. To discuss your case with the best drug crimes defense attorney in Houston, contact the Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. today.
What is Ecstasy?
Ecstasy is the most common street name for the psychoactive drug Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). While MDMA had been in testing for potential medicinal benefits prior to its ban in the United States, there are currently no known medicinal uses for the drug. Ecstasy remains illegal in all 50 states. The drug gives users sensations of increased energy, pleasure, and empathy.
MDMA was created in 1912 by the drug company Merck at a time when the company was seeking a compound that would halt abnormal bleeding. The drug was a byproduct of that effort that was largely ignored by the company throughout the years. In the 1950s, both Merck and the United States government began studying the effects of the drug. By 1968, the substance had become a popular street drug in cities like Chicago. This led to its inclusion as a controlled substance in 1970.
In most cases, ecstasy comes in the form of tablets. Typically these tablets are diluted with other substances. It is also common to find MDMA in its undiluted crystalline-powder form. This powdered form of pure MDMA is also known as “molly” or “mandy.” Ecstasy will also occasionally come in the form of hydrochloride salt or in gel cap form.
Common Street Names
Ecstasy itself is a street name for the drug Methylenedioxymethamphetamine. However, the substance is also known by many other street names other than ecstasy or MDMA. Some of the most common street names are below:
- Disco Biscuits
- Dancing Shoes
- Egg Rolls
- Happy Pills
- Hug Drug
- Love Drug
- Malcolm X
- Scooby snacks
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin X
What are the effects of ecstasy?
The effects of consuming MDMA are typically felt by users within 30 to 60 minutes of consumption. The effects usually peak after one or two hours and plateau after three and a half hours. The short-term psychoactive effects that abusers seek include:
- Euphoria – A general sense of ease and happiness
- Increased self-confidence
- Increased feelings of community
- Increased Empathy
- Relaxation and reduced anxiety
- Increased emotionality
- General feeling of peacefulness
- Mild hallucinations
- Enhanced senses
- Enhanced perception or sexuality
- Distorted sense of time
The use of ecstasy has a variety of short-term adverse side effects. High doses of MDMA can lead to hyperthermia and dehydration, and in rare cases, it can be fatal. Fatalities related to ecstasy typically involve users drinking too much water in an attempt to avoid dehydration and suffering from low sodium concentration in the blood.
How is ecstasy classified under federal law?
Under federal law, every controlled substance is placed within a drug schedule established by the Controlled Substance Act of 1970. The Act sets out five different schedules, with each schedule containing a number of controlled substances. The drugs contained in Schedule I are regulated the heaviest while drugs in Schedule V have the lowest level of regulation. Typically, Schedule I drugs have no medical purpose while Schedule V drugs have a medical benefit but also contain addictive properties.
According to the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, ecstasy is classified as a Schedule I drug due to its lack of medicinal purpose. Schedule I also contains hard street drugs like heroin, LSD, and peyote among others.
How is ecstasy classified under Texas state law?
The State of Texas differs in its classification of drugs compared to federal law. According to the Texas Controlled Substances Act, all controlled substances are categorized into six drug penalty groups. The only exception is marijuana, which is regulated separately. The six drug penalty groups are:
- Penalty Group 1
- Penalty Group 1A
- Penalty Group 2
- Penalty Group 2A
- Penalty Group 3
- Penalty Group 4
Each penalty group carries a range of possible sentences with penalty group 1 carrying to steepest punishment and penalty group 4 carrying the lightest. If you are convicted of possession under Texas law, the length of your sentence will depend on the penalty group of the drug you allegedly possessed and the amount of the drug you allegedly possessed.
Under Texas law, ecstasy is listed in penalty group 2. These drugs are near the top when it comes to maximum possible penalties. In fact, a conviction for possession of more than 400 grams of ecstasy carries a potential state prison term between 5 and 99 years. In addition, a conviction carries a maximum fine of $50,000. Other drugs listed in penalty group 2 are PCP and peyote.
Hiring the Best Houston Drug Possession Lawyer
If you have been arrested for possession of ecstasy in the Houston area, contact the Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. immediately. Doug Murphy is a Board Certified expert in criminal defense law. He has the experience to help you build the strongest defense possible. A conviction for possession of ecstasy is a felony under Texas law, and Doug Murphy understands how that could impact you for the rest of your life. To discuss your case with Houston's top ecstasy possession lawyer, contact the Doug Murphy Law Firm, P.C. today for a free consultation.