The D.C. police department’s wallet-size cards on pot laws

July 16, 2014

The D.C. Police department has prepared these wallet-size cards laying out key facts about the District’s new marijuana law.

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The advent of the new law, spurred by reports of stark racial disparities in marijuana arrest statistics, means a change in how police handle one of the most common violations they encounter. Under new orders set to take effect July 17, police can no longer take action upon simply smelling the odor of marijuana. Nor can they demand that a person found in possession of up to one ounce produce identification.

Those found with larger amounts or caught using marijuana in public places can still be arrested and charged with a crime, but otherwise officers who catch someone carrying weed will be required to simply confiscate any visible contraband and write a ticket carrying a $25 fine.

Included in the department’s rules on how to enforce the new law is this table noting that littering carries a steeper fine than possession of small amounts of marijuana.

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