New marijuana law reduces or removes convictions - KUSI News - San Diego, CA

New marijuana law reduces or removes convictions

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When California voters approved the legal use of marijuana, they also ushered in some changes to the criminal justice system.

People who have been convicted of marijuana offenses can now get their convictions reduced or even wiped clean.

What used to be a crime isn't a crime in California anymore, and cannabis Attorney Michael Cindrich says that's good news for anyone who's ever been convicted of a marijuana offense.

“Cultivation, possession for sale, transportation of over an ounce, simple possession: these are all crimes now, where one can petition the court to have those reduced to either misdemeanors or have them wiped out all together if that conduct is now legal, Cindrich said.

Under prop 64, the criminal penalties have been relaxed. Now, someone who has been convicted for an offense such as possession, distribution or cultivation can ask the court to change their felony to a misdemeanor.

It took Cindrich just one week's time to help a woman in North County wipe a felony off her record. After being convicted of possession with intent to distribute. The court had ordered her to wear an ankle monitor and placed her on probation.

In essence, the passage of prop 64 puts an end to the war on drugs and now permits most nonviolent drug offenders to get out of jail or prison. In some simple straightforward cases, all that is required is completing this simple one page petition.

Supporters of prop 64 noted that the law had a disproportionate effect in convicting people form low income and minority communities.

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