President Calls On Governors To Pardon Simple Marijuana Offenses

Thursday, October 6th 2022, 9:07 pm


President Joe Biden issued orders pardoning all prior federal simple marijuana possession offenses. He also said he would like to see this done on the state level. 

President Biden said it's time that we right these wrongs around marijuana. He's asking all governors to take the next step.  

“The federal government currently classifies marijuana as a schedule 1 substance, the same as heroin and LSD and more serious than fentanyl. It makes no sense,” President Biden said. 

The president said no one should be in jail just for using or possessing marijuana. The Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office said it all depends on the amount. 

“At most we're ticketing people. For larger amounts of marijuana that's still considered trafficking, as the president alluded to, he still wants those types of crimes prosecuted. We're a law enforcement agency so we'll enforce whatever laws they put in place,” Aaron Brilbeck said. 

Michelle Tilley with Oklahomans for Sensible Marijuana Laws said the issue is what happens when you can't afford to pay your ticket. 

“A lot of times people who have these issues for whatever reason they can't afford to pay the fine and then that ends up sending them back into the system,” Tilley said. 

Tilley said the president's message addresses what her group has been working on for years. She said it impacts thousands of Oklahomans and their stories stick with her. 

“A woman when she was nineteen got into trouble for simple possession and ten years later, she still has issues with things like renting a place to live or getting certain jobs. This issue shouldn't be something that's ruining someone's life,” Tilley said. 

News 9 reached out to the governor's office regarding the president's call to action. We have not heard back. 


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