If you have been charged with unlawful drug possession or gun possession in the greater Memphis area, you need a knowledgeable and confident Memphis Criminal Defense Attorney who will fight to protect your rights and freedoms.

Those who face drug-related charges face some of the harshest penalties for any type of crime. However, people charged with drug offenses often are suffering from drug addiction or dependency and can be rehabilitated with appropriate treatment, but need the advocacy of a skilled and compassionate Memphis drug defense attorney to get them the help they need. 

In Tennessee, because of the prevalence of gun violence, lawmakers have attempted to crack down on offenses related to the possession and use of firearms. The result of stricter laws against owning, possessing, carrying, or using firearms is a confusing system in which gun owners may think they’re complying with the law but end up facing serious weapons charges for having a gun in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Call (901) 552-6228 today to schedule a consultation with Attorney Joseph Pehanick.


Unlawful possession of a drug or weapon charges most often affect two of our most fundamental Constitutional Rights, the 2nd and 4th Amendments. 

2nd Amendment – The right of the people to keep and bear arms.
4th Amendment – The right of the people to be secure in their person and homes against unreasonable searched and seizures. Requiring warrants based upon probable cause.                     

Home searches and traffic stops in Memphis most often affect these two constitutional rights. Our legal team reviews Memphis Police procedure to ensure your constitutional rights have not been violated and fight for dismissal of charges when they have been violated.

To effectively defend your constitutional rights and defend against your drug possession or gun possession arrest, you need an experienced Memphis Criminal Defense Attorney with knowledge in state and federal drug and gun laws. Our legal team has the experience necessary to help you understand complex constitutional legal issues and a proven track record in defending drug possession and gun possession cases.

If you have been charged with a drug offense or unlawful possession of a weapon, you need a drug possession defense lawyer who will fight for your fundamental rights. Because drug offenses carry very harsh penalties, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney who will fight for a reduction of the charges against you and dismissal when police violate your fundamental rights. Our firm has successfully defended many marijuana, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, Oxycontin, hydrocodone, and Xanax charges in Memphis, Tennessee.


What are the punishments for unlawful possession of a weapon?

It is illegal to possess and carry a weapon with the intent to go armed in Tennessee. The circumstances of the offense and your criminal history will greatly influence the severity of the resulting punishments.

Class C Misdemeanor – if the offense did not occur in public. Punishable with a maximum sentence up to 30 days in jail. 

Class A Misdemeanor – if the offense occurred in public, if you have been previously convicted of domestic violence, if you are subject to an Order of Protection, or if you are in possession while under the influence. Punishable with a maximum sentence up to 11 months and 29 days in jail.

Class E Felony – if you have been previously convicted of a felony. Punishable with a sentence ranging from 1-6 years in jail.

Class D Felony – if your prior felony conviction was drug-related. Punishable with a sentence ranging from 2-12 years in jail. 

Class C Felony – if your prior felony conviction involved the use of violence or a weapon. Punishable with a sentence ranging from 3-15 years.

What if I have a Legal Permit to Carry a Weapon?

Tennessee gun laws can be complex due to the number of exceptions to the law. The most common exception is whether you have a valid gun carry permit from the Tennessee Department of Safety. Other exceptions can include, possession at your home or business, and incident to hunting or fishing.

What are the punishments for drug offenses?

Many factors are taken into consideration when charged with a drug offense such as the type of drug, the quantity of the drug, and whether there was intent to sell or distribute the drug. Contact a Memphis drug possession lawyer to understand what charges you are facing. 

What is simple possession or casual exchange?

It is an offense for a person to knowingly possess or casually exchange a controlled substance. For marijuana possession, it is an offense for a person to distribute a small amount of marijuana not more than one-half ounce. Small amounts of other controlled substances can also be viewed as simple possession. Offenses are an A misdemeanor punishable up to a $2,500 fine and/or up to 11 months and 29 days in jail. 

What is intent to manufacture, sale, delivery and/or felony possession?

It is an offense for a person to knowingly manufacture a controlled substance; deliver a controlled substance; sell a controlled substance; or possess a controlled substance with intent to manufacture, deliver, or sell such controlled substance.  Felony possession offenses range of punishment can vastly vary from an E felony, punishable from 1-6 years, up to an A felony, punishable from 15-60 years, depending on the type or schedule of controlled substance, the amount of controlled substance, and other facts and circumstances of the offense.