News

ACLU report: Pot charges plummet in Washington

ACLU report: Pot charges plummet in Washington

Photo: clipart.com

AP News

SEATTLE, Wash. –  A primary backer of Washington’s legalization of marijuana is reporting a massive drop in pot possession charges last year.

The state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union says court filings for misdemeanor marijuana possession by adults over 21 years old totaled just 120 cases in 2013, a huge drop from 5,531 cases in 2012.

The 120 cases filed last year likely concerned people caught with more than the ounce of weed they’re allowed to have under Washington law, but less than 40 grams, which can trigger felony possession charges.

ACLU lawyer Mark Cooke says the data suggest legalization has helped free up police and prosecutorial resources.

But the organization also says racial bias concerns persist: Among the 120 cases last year, African American adults remained almost three times more likely than whites to face charges.

Recent Headlines

15 hours ago in Local

Police arrest May Day protesters in Seattle

space needle

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle police say they arrested nine people during anti-capitalist protests that injured five officers on May Day. Authorities…

15 hours ago in Local

Missing boy found dead after hiking near the Big Four Ice Caves

ice

Officials report it is unclear how the boy died but it did not involved the ice caves. The trail leading to the caves only just reopened Friday, after a fatal incident last July.

16 hours ago in Local

Seattle traffic is backing up, Viaduct isn’t only construction project causing problems

Seattle

The State Department of Transportation's Lisa Van Cise says the SnoCo Squeeze is also bad.

16 hours ago in Local

Seattle braces for heavier traffic this Monday due to Viaduct closure

traffic jam

If you thought Friday's traffic was bad due to the viaduct closer, the State Department of Transportation says brace yourself for today.

16 hours ago in Local

4-alarm fire in Mount Vernon destroys two businesses

PC: KGMI/ Jennifer Irwin

damage fire

Craft Stoves and Hansen's Furniture were gutted and a carpet cleaning store nearby suffered heat damage.