Why Heroin Crimes Are Harshly Prosecuted in Wisconsin

Wisconsin has an opioid problem. The state’s death rate from this category of drugs is 16.9 deaths per 100,000 people. This rate is higher than the national death rate of 14.6 deaths per 100,000 people. These deaths come from drugs like heroin, as well as synthetic opioids like Fentanyl.

In the five-year period from 2012 to 2017, heroin overdose deaths rose from 185 to 414. Synthetic opioid deaths had an even sharper increase. These rose from 56 to 466. Despite the fact that drug addiction is a known medical condition that requires treatment before a person can stay sober, the criminal justice system here continues to take a harsh stance against the possession of drugs, particularly heroin.

Heroin possession in Wisconsin

A person facing a possession of heroin charge is looking at a felony, regardless of the amount they are said to be in control of. All possession charges are a class I felony in this state. This means you can be incarcerated for up to three years and six months. You may also face a fine of $10,000 if convicted.

Heroin sales charges

All charges related to selling heroin are felonies. Having less than 3 grams is a class F felony that comes with up to 12 years and six months in prison and up to $25,000 in fines. From 3 to 10 grams is a class E felony that comes with up to 15 years of imprisonment and fines up to $50,000. From 10 to 50 grams is a class D felony, which means up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000. Over 50 grams is a class C felony that can lead to up to 40 years of imprisonment and fines up to $100,000. The penalties are very harsh, but they are increased if the sale is to a minor or within 1,000 feet of a school.

Defendants may have options

Some defendants will qualify for drug court, which is a court-supervised program that combines criminal justice with rehabilitation. This program has strict requirements that you must consider if you are going to go this route. It is best to explore drug court as one possible avenue to resolve your case, but you should still continue to plan a defense for a trial just in case that is the only resolution method you have.


See our Drug Crimes legal service page to get help now!

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