Seattle Judges Vacate 15 Years of Marijuana Convictions Because It Targeted People of Color

Seattle Judges Vacate 15 Years of Marijuana Convictions Because It Targeted People of Color

Seven metropolis municipal court docket judges in Seattle mentioned they threw out over 500 convictions this week for misdemeanor marijuana possessions as a result of they unfairly focused individuals of shade, CNN experiences.

Of their resolution, the judges mentioned that 46 p.c of these circumstances concerned African-American defendants.

“We’ve taken one other essential step to proper the wrongs of the failed conflict on medication, and to construct true financial alternative for all,” mentioned Mayor Jenny Durkan, per CNN. “Whereas we can not reverse all of the hurt that was carried out, we’ll proceed to behave to offer Seattle residents — together with immigrants and refugees — a clear slate.”

In keeping with U.S. Census knowledge, African-People make up simply 7 p.c of Seattle’s inhabitants.

An extra breakdown of the circumstances revealed that 46 p.c White, Three p.c Asian, Three p.c Native American and a couple of p.c unknown individuals have been convicted within the circumstances, which came about between 1996 and 2010, per CNN.

Leisure marijuana use was legalized in Seattle in 2012 by Washington voters.

Seattle metropolis lawyer Pete Holmes filed a movement in April for the convictions to be dismissed, stating that African-People have been 3 times extra prone to be arrested for pot possession than White individuals.

Per the movement:

Dismissing this cost displays Seattle’s values and acknowledges the unfavourable collateral penalties of a drug conviction, together with problem to find employment or moving into faculty or the navy, acquiring pupil loans or authorities backed housing qualifying for meals stamps or different authorities help, being allowed entry into some international nations and acquiring youngster custody or adoption.

Seattle is becoming a member of a rising record of cities and states dismissing previous marijuana possession circumstances.

California politicians voted in August to expunge outdated marijuana convictions, and a Manhattan district lawyer’s workplace dismissed 3,042 convictions earlier this month for marijuana smoking and possession.

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