The Columbus Dispatch reported recently that although violent crimes are slightly up in the U.S., drug arrests continued to greatly outnumber other crimes–including violent crime.
In fact, there were more than four times as many arrests for drugs as violent crimes in Ohio last year. According to the Uniform Crime Reporting statistics released on Monday by the FBI, on a national level, just about every 48 seconds, someone in the U.S. is arrested on marijuana-related charges.
According to the report, police arrested about 750,000 people for possession or sale of marijuana consumers last year. In fact, marijuana arrests accounted for nearly half of all drug-related arrests that occurred last year.
Most of the arrests occurred right here in the Midwest, as we likely have the country’s harshest marijuana laws. Nearly 52% of the arrests nationwide for marijuana possession happened here in the Midwest. In contrast, only 22% occurred out West (where marijuana possession laws are more lenient).
The Dispatch notes that the executive director of a group called Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (consisting of current former police officers speaking out against the failure of U.S. drug policies)–Neill Franklin–explained that:
“These numbers represent a tremendous loss of human potential. Each one of those arrests is the story of someone who may suffer a variety of adverse effects from their interaction with the justice system.”
Franklin pointed out the multitude of adverse consequences of a drug charge, including federal student loan aid, saying: “Commit a murder or a robbery and the government will still give you a student loan. Get convicted for smoking a joint and you’re likely to lose it. This is supposed to help people get over their drug habit?”
If you are one of the unfortunate 750,000 to have gotten cited for marijuana possession, talk to our Columbus, Ohio marijuana attorney today. We can help navigate the system toward avoiding a drug charge on your record, avoiding potential license suspensions and avoiding other adverse consequences that follow from a conviction for marijuana possession.