What is the law on Marijuana Possession in Merriam Municipal Court?

The City of Merriam is governed by the Merriam Municipal Code. The Municipal Code is just a collection of ordinances that the city council has written, passed and adopted into law. Those laws govern the people that are in the city limits of Merriam. They dictate all different types of things including building codes, business license, signage, criminal conduct and a host of other things. The city code is expansive and touches nearly every aspect of life. Because it is so expansive the city council didn't write every single letter of the law, they will sometimes adopt prewritten laws. The codes governing criminal conduct are a prime example. The city of Merriam has adopted the Uniform Municipal Code for Kansas Municipalities. Adopting a prewritten code saves time, effort and cost associated with producing the code. This is the law prohibiting Marijuana possession in the Merriam Municipal Court.

Sec. 9.9.1. Unlawful Possession of Marijuana and Tetrahydrocannabinols

(a) Except as authorized by the Uniform Controlled Substance Act, K.S.A. 65-4101 et seq., and amendments thereto, it shall be unlawful for any person to possess or have under such person’s control marijuana, as designated in K.S.A. 65-4105(d), and amendments thereto, or tetrahydrocannabinols, as designated in K.S.A. 65- 4105(h), and amendments thereto.

(b) Penalty. Violations of subsection

  • (a) is a Class B violation for a first offense and a class A violation if the person has a prior conviction under K.S.A. 65- 4162, prior to its repeal, under substantially similar offense from another jurisdiction, or under any city ordinance or county resolution for a substantially similar offense.

(c) It shall be an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section arising out of a person’s possession of any cannabidiol treatment preparation if the person:

  1. Has a debilitating medical condition, as defined in section 1, and amendments thereto, or is the parent or guardian of a minor child who has such debilitating medical condition;

  2. Is possessing a cannabidiol treatment preparation, as defined in section 1, and amendments thereto, that is being used to treat such debilitating medical condition; and

  3. Has possession of a letter, at all times while the person has possession of the cannabidiol treatment preparation, that:

  • (A) Shall be shown to a law enforcement officer on such officer’s request;

  • (B) Is dated within the preceding 15 months and signed by the physician licensed to practice medicine and surgery in Kansas who diagnosed the debilitating medical condition;

  • (C) Is on such physician’s letterhead; and

  • (D) Identifies the person or the person’s minor child as such physician’s patient and identifies the patient’s debilitating medical condition. (K.S.A. 21-5706)

{Editor’s Note: If an individual has two or more prior convictions for violations of section 9.9.1, or for a substantially similar offense under Kansas law or other jurisdiction, violations are considered a felony under state law over which municipal courts have no jurisdiction, as such, violations should be referred to the appropriate prosecuting authority. they cannot be prosecuted in municipal court}.

Possible Punishment

*Class B Violations are punishable by up to 180 days in the Johnson County Jail, however, most Class B Violations are eligible for probation

*Class A Violations are punishable by up to 365 days in the Johnson County Jail, however, most Class A Violations are eligible for probation

I've been charged with Marijuana Possession in Merriam Municipal Court, now what?

Being charged with a crime is very similar to any other big problem you have in your life. At first it's scary, you don't know what to do, you don't know how this happened and you don't know how to make it go away. Just like any other big problem, it's smart to start by gathering information. If you've found this page you are already on the right path, you're reading the law that law enforcement says you broke. The problem with the law is, it is often confusing. There are very little fact scenarios built into the text of the law. Reading the law generally won't answer, "I did this.... did I break the law?" type questions. If this is your first time being in trouble you also generally don't know the questions to ask yet. If you find yourself thinking that exact thing try reading the commonly asked questions when charged with Marijuana Possession. After you've read the law, read the commonly asked questions, it's time to meet with an a lawyer with experience in the Merriam Municipal Court. The time you spend meeting with prospective lawyers can be used by answering legal questions but is probably better used by asking about the Merriam Municipal Court and how cases are handled like yours. Knowing the processes, people and personalities the court is just as important as knowing the law.