Far Fewer People Charged with Marijuana Possession in 2013 - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Far Fewer People Charged with Marijuana Possession Since Legalization

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A primary backer of Washington state's legalization of marijuana say far fewer people were charged with pot possession last year. A primary backer of Washington state's legalization of marijuana say far fewer people were charged with pot possession last year.

SEATTLE, WA - A primary backer of Washington state's legalization of marijuana say far fewer people were charged with pot possession last year.

The Washington State American Civil Liberties Union says court filings for misdemeanor marijuana possession by adults over 21 years old totaled just 120 cases in 2013, a huge drop from 5,531 cases in 2012.

The 120 cases filed last year likely concerned people caught with more than the ounce of weed they're allowed to have under Washington law, but less than 40 grams, which can trigger felony possession charges.

ACLU lawyer Mark Cooke says the data suggest legalization has helped free up resources for police and prosecutors.

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