Most Common Drug Crimes in South Carolina

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In South Carolina, drug crimes can range from simple possession to distribution, depending on the amount. Drug crimes in South Carolina can carry serious, life-changing, and impactful consequences. Sentencing, fines, and penalties as well as the external consequences should not be taken lightly. 

South Carolina has a list of drugs that can induce a criminal charge. This list contains what controlled dangerous substances (CDS) a person can be charged with having in South Carolina. South Carolina, unlike Georgia for example, categorizes their crimes. South Carolina crimes can be categorized into six classes for felonies and three classes for misdemeanors. Further categorization is used to determine which drugs incur which crimes. It is important to understand that drug crimes are graduating offenses in SC meaning that the penalty is enhanced for each subsequent conviction.

Suffice to say, it would be difficult for someone without years of criminal drug defense, to represent themselves if they are ever charged with a drug crime. As a native South Carolinian, Ashley Cornwell has practiced law for over a decade. She specializes in handling drug-related crimes and representing her clients vigorously. If you or someone you love has been charged with any drug offense in South Carolina, including Charleston or Orangeburg, do not hesitate to contact us.

What are drug schedules in South Carolina?

South Carolina drugs can be scheduled between schedule one and schedule five. Each schedule has different substances included in them known as controlled dangerous substances and depending on the schedule the severity of the consequence is different. 

Schedule I

Schedule one drugs include 

Opiates and opiate derivatives: heroin, codeine, morphine and morphine substances

Hallucinogenic drugs like LSD, DMT and Psilocybin and 


Scheduled II 

These drugs include

Cocaine, drugs chemically derived from those under Schedule I, Opium and other Opium derivatives, and stimulated like amphetamines and methamphetamine. 

Schedule III

Barbiturates, sedatives, GHA, and other drugs with limited narcotic compounds are included in the schedule III

Check out this list for the full comprehensive breakdown of Schedule I – IV of CDS in South Carolina.

Penalties for Marijuana possession in South Carolina

To be charged with Simple Possession, a person must be found to be in control or near less than 28 grams of marijuana. Simple Possession is a misdemeanor with up to 30 days in jail. 

Possession with intent to distribute comes after being found in possession of over 28 grams of marijuana. To be charged with trafficking, one must be found with over 10 pounds of marijuana. Both of which are felonies with more stringent consequences than simple possession. 

Penalties for Cocaine possession in South Carolina

Simple Possession of cocaine is judged to be carrying less than a gram. Above one gram is possession with intent to distribute. Above 10 grams is trafficking. 

Simple Possession of cocaine can come with up to three years and up to $5,000 in fines. Trafficking charges for cocaine can come with jail time of up to 30 years. This penalty can be applied to meth and cocaine-based drugs. Fines can be over $25,000 and higher depending on the specific nature of the crime.

Contact Cornwell Law

Cornwell Law has years of experience handling all types of drug charge cases. If you or someone you love has been charged with any drug offense in South Carolina, including Charleston or Orangeburg, don’t hesitate to contact us

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