5th Degree Drug Charges in Minnesota: What You Need to Know

In Minnesota, drug charges are serious, and people should not take them lightly. The consequences can not only have short term effects but a lasting impact on your future. A Minnesota drug lawyer should be able to walk you through the process and be with you every step of the way.

The consequences can have both short and long term effects on your life. A drug charge does not have to ruin your years of hard work and accomplishments. If handled in a proper and legally sound manner, it may only be a bump in the road.

While there are varying degrees of drug charges, this blog post will focus on a 5th-degree charge in Minnesota.

We will explore the definition of a 5th-degree drug charge in Minnesota. We will discuss the punishments for drug offenses. We will also cover what steps to take if you are dealing with this legal issue. Additionally, we will explain the significance of having a drug lawyer in you to support you in your case.

We will explain the significance of having an experienced criminal defense attorney. The work they do can aid in your defense.


A 5th-degree drug charge in Minnesota typically involves possession or sale of a small amount of a controlled substance. Minnesota classifies controlled substances into different schedules based on their abuse potential and known medical applications. Common examples include marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and prescription medications like opioids.

A 5th degree drug change could be either a gross misdemeanor or a felony. This depends upon the drug, amount, and prior criminal history.

Possession of a controlled substance is a violation of the law. Having illegal drugs, even a small amount, can lead to serious legal consequences if caught. This also applies to having prescription medication without a valid prescription.


Several factors can influence the severity of a 5th degree drug charge in Minnesota:

  1. Type and Quantity of Substance: The type of drug and the amount in possession can impact the severity of the charge. Possession of larger quantities or certain substances considered more dangerous may result in harsher penalties. Even a small amount of a drugs is enough for gross misdemeanor or a felony drug charges. This can include jail time or prison time.
  2. Intent: Intent to sell or distribute drugs can escalate the charges. Items like boxes, scales, or lots of money may show a plan to share, not just for personal use. Sale charges are more serious. This is because sales are more of a danger to society than possession.
  3. Prior Offenses: Prior convictions or involvement in drug-related offenses can aggravate the consequences, leading to enhanced penalties. A prior drug charge or conviction will lead you to a more serious penalties.


In Minnesota penalties for low-level drug charges can vary. This is depending on the specifics of the case and a person’s criminal history. Factors like the type and quantity, intent to sell or distribute, and prior offenses, all may have an impact on the consequences.

The consequences can be more severe if the person has a prior criminal record. This includes non drug offenses.

The details of the case, such as the amount and type of drugs involved, can also impact the penalties imposed.

Talk to an experienced drug lawyer and get the assistance you need and deserve. They can help you understand the possible outcomes if you’re facing charges from a drug crime in Minnesota. Some common consequences may include:

A 5th-degree drug offense can lead to local jail or years in prison. The sentences can vary from probation to a few years. Again, the amount of time and whether served in county jail or years in prison will vary based upon the specifics of the case.

Breaking the law can result in fines. These fines can include court costs and fees. In addition to fines, there may be other punishments.

In some cases, the court may opt for probation instead of or in addition to jail. Probation typically involves strict supervision and adherence to certain conditions, such as drug testing and participation in treatment programs. The court can also order a comprehensive assessment if recommended by a probation agent.

A drug conviction can have long-term consequences, including a permanent mark on your criminal record. This can affect various aspects of your life, including employment opportunities, housing, and professional licenses.


A skilled Minnesota drug lawyer can help you understand your rights and options. They can also provide guidance on the best course of action. This type of legal situation requires specialized knowledge and expertise to navigate successfully.

Don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you find yourself in this situation. A skilled lawyer can assess the details of your case and develop a strategic defense tailored to your circumstances. Possible defense strategies may include:

  1. Challenging an illegal search and seizure that can lead to suppressing evidence and dropping charges.
  2. Arguing you did not have control over the drugs. Specifically, if you were unaware of them being in your possession.
  3. Claiming entrapment as a defense if law enforcement made you commit a crime.

If successful in these defenses, it may result in suppression of evidence and dismissal of charges.

Your lawyer should be skilled in plea negations or talking with the prosecution. This can lead to fewer charges or different punishment choices.

If you are facing a 5th degree drug offense in Minnesota, seek assistance from an experienced Minnesota drug lawyer. Preferably find an attorney that only practices in criminal defense. This type of legal situation requires specified knowledge and expertise. A skilled lawyer can assess the details of your cased and develop a strategic defense tailored to your circumstances.


A 5th degree drug charge in Minnesota is a serious legal matter with significant consequences. If someone accuses you of having or selling drugs, you need to know what actions you can take and what rights you possess. Get help from a lawyer and discuss defense options to improve your case’s outcome.

If authorities charge you with a crime, you have options. Get help to understand the law and defend yourself for a better outcome. You can learn more about the kinds of drug charge cases our firm handles here.

Tom Hagen is a partner at Kohlmeyer Hagen Law Firm, located in Mankato Minnesota. He has offices in Mankato Minnesota and Rochester Minnesota. He focuses his practice on Mankato drug offenses and Rochester drug offenses, along with other serious criminal defense. We serve Southern Minnesota. Call us today at 507-625-5000 for a free consultation to answer your questions and discuss your case.

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