GREAT news for citizens of Washington D.C. As of Thursday, July 17, anyone caught in possession of a small amount of marijuana will be subject to a payable ticket similar to that of littering. An offense that previously lead to jail time will now be resolved by simply paying a fine that in most cases will be less than paying a parking violation that the city so graciously hands out.
After a lengthy congressional review the decriminalization of marijuana hits the District. This means that the possession of one ounce or less or less of marijuana comes simply with a $25 fine. Possession of larger amounts of marijuana, distribution or smoking in public is still an offense that will lead to an arrest and prosecution
Delroy Burton, chairman of the D.C. police union, admits that many officers will be reluctant to the new law at first but that they have created a video guide to help the officers on the street. Decriminalization will free up valuable time and resources to allow officers to deal with more pressing matters than simply marijuana possession.
The D.C. police department has issued wallet-sized guides laying out the key facts to the new marijuana laws. It is important as a citizen of the District to know ones rights and the basics to the new decriminalization laws that are going into affect.
Colorado and Washington are leading the crusade against unjust marijuana laws with the full on legalization. This has not only lead to a drop in crime but a drastic increase in revenue for the two states. Dispensaries throughout Colorado sold about $90 million worth of marijuana for recreational use since the legalization went into affect five months ago. Medicinal marijuana, which has been legal since 2000, raked in roughly $165 million in revenue for the state in the same five-month period. The logical questions for the District is, are we next in taking advantage of this million-dollar cash crop. Virginia can keep tobacco, the District will blaze a new path of profit with marijuana.