Washington Prosecutors Dismiss Pending Marijuana Possession Cases

Washington's Initiative 502, which decriminalizes adult possession of up to one ounce of marijuana, is already having an effect. Today, the elected prosecutors of Washington's two largest counties, King (which includes Seattle) and Pierce, announced they will dismiss more than 220 pending cases with marijuana possession charges. They have decided to apply I 502 now, rather than wait until the Dec. 6 effective date:

"I think when the people voted to change the policy, they weren't focused on when the effective date of the new policy would be. They spoke loudly and clearly that we should not treat small amounts of marijuana as an offense," [DA]Satterberg said...."There is no point in continuing to seek criminal penalties for conduct that will be legal next month."

Seattle police and the King's County Sheriff also announced they will immediately cease arresting people for personal possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.

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    Jeralyn... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 04:20:57 PM EST
    did you happen to see this editorial in the Post?  

    There's a simple way to resolve potential conflict between Colorado and the federal government now that voters have approved Amendment 64 -- and Congresswoman Diana DeGette has hit upon the answer.

    The 1st District Democrat suggests adding a phrase to the section of the federal Controlled Substances Act where it talks about federal pre-emption of state law if there is a conflict. At that point -- it's Section 903, to be precise -- DeGette would add language that exempts from the act any state provisions "relating to marijuana."

    nice election day (none / 0) (#1)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 06:46:01 AM EST
    bonus for a lot of people and freeing up of court time.  Makes a lot of sense.  

    The law leaves open the question... (none / 0) (#2)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 07:29:13 AM EST
    ... of how you legally buy the less than an ounce or legally buy the seeds to grow your own.

    It will be interesting to see what the various Federales do to stomp out this act of rebellion.

    Good to see it happen so quickly! (none / 0) (#3)
    by Redbrow on Sat Nov 10, 2012 at 02:01:48 PM EST
    I was involved in California's legalization effort and this was my biggest argument for legalization - an end to persecution of nonviolent growers and users. But the big money medical profiteers shouted the loudest about who gets the biggest piece of the pie, them or 'corporations lurking in the shadows.' They never allowed the criminal justice amnesty angle into the debate.