WA state accepting online petitions for Cannabis Clemency – link here!

WA state accepting online petitions for Cannabis Clemency – link here!

MARIJUANA JUSTICE INITIATIVE

In Washington state, it is no longer considered criminal behavior for adults to possess a small amount of marijuana for personal use. The governor’s Marijuana Justice Initiative intends to recognize the evolution of the state’s beliefs about marijuana and, within existing capacity, provide clemency relief to some who have these convictions on their records. The Initiative will provide an expedited process to grant pardons to people with a single misdemeanor conviction on their criminal record for adult marijuana possession prosecuted under Washington state law.

For decades, people have faced criminal prosecution for behavior that is no longer considered a crime in Washington. Inslee believes that forgiving these convictions will allow people to move on with their lives without these convictions causing additional burdens on people, their families, their employers and their communities. This is a small step, but one that moves us in the direction of correcting injustices that disproportionately affected communities of color. A successful pardon of a marijuana possession conviction can assist with barriers to housing, employment and education.

Under this Initiative, Inslee will exercise his constitutional clemency authority to pardon individuals who have a single conviction on their criminal record. That sole conviction must be for adult (21+) misdemeanor marijuana possession, prosecuted under state law in Washington. The conviction must have occurred between January 1, 1998 and December 5, 2012, when I-502 legalized marijuana possession. Records indicate that roughly 3,500 individuals are eligible under this Initiative.

Those interested in requesting a pardon must complete the online petition form below and submit it to the Office of the Governor. This will officially start the request for a pardon of the conviction.

VIDEO: Inslee announces Marijuana Justice Initiative at 2019 Washington Cannabis Summit

New law allows individuals to vacate multiple marijuana offense convictions

On May 13, 2019, Governor Inslee signed SB 5605, Concerning Marijuana Offense Convictions. This new law goes into effect on July 28, 2019. Beginning that date, every person convicted of misdemeanor marijuana possession offenses in Washington, who was 21 years of age or older at the time of the offense, may apply to the sentencing court to vacate his or her conviction record for the marijuana offense. This means that if, for example, the marijuana conviction occurred in Cowlitz County District Court, the individual will need to apply for the vacation in Cowlitz County District Court.  And if an individual has multiple marijuana convictions from different courts, then the individual will need to apply to vacate each conviction separately in the court in which the conviction was prosecuted.  The court will then vacate that qualifying individual’s marijuana conviction record.

Washington State Courts has resources for individuals who want to apply to vacate their record, including information about the process for vacating convictions, a downloadable vacation application form (CrRLJ 09.0100) and a directory of courts.

While the governor’s initiative expedites pardons for individuals with a single marijuana misdemeanor prosecuted under state law as 21+ adults between January 1, 1998 and December 5, 2012, this new law allows individuals to vacate one or more marijuana possession misdemeanors regardless of when the offense occurred or whether the conviction was under state or local jurisdiction.

https://www.governor.wa.gov/marijuanajustice Retrieved 03/17/2020 6:48pm

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