Every 42 seconds, someone in America is arrested for marijuana possession.
This week, the state assembly took a step to cut that number — in New York, at least.
In the race to legalize marijuana, the pace setter is Colorado. Here in New York, the state assembly has taken the first step toward relaxing the experience of getting caught with the drug in public.
Lawmakers voted to decriminalize the possession of up to 15 grams of marijuana. The vote is significant because of how it could redefine the NYPD’s controversial practice of stop and frisk.
The New York Civil Liberties Union’s analysis of the NYPD data shows the more than half a million people were stopped last year under the program. Out of those stops, 729 guns were found. but the NYCLU found over 5,000 people were arrested for marijuana possession.
Senate republicans are against the bill. One in particular, Senator Golden from Brooklyn says “we should not be sending a signal across the state that marijuana is okay.”