Pubdate: Mon, 21 Jul 2014
Source: New York Daily News (NY)
Copyright: 2014 Daily News, L.P.
Author: Kenneth Lovett
Page: 2


ALBANY - Two state legislators have written four of the city's
district attorneys asking them to follow Brooklyn District Attorney
Kenneth Thompson's lead by declining to prosecute cases against those
charged with possessing small amounts of pot.

But the prosecutors aren't high on the idea.

Sen. Daniel Squadron and Assemblyman Karim Camara, Brooklyn Democrats
who recently introduced legislation that would decriminalize the
possession of small amounts of pot, sent letters last week to district
attorneys in Manhattan, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island urging
them to copy Thompson.

The two noted that blacks and Hispanics are far more likely to be
arrested on low-level pot possession charges than whites are.

Queens DA Richard Brown said the vast majority of firsttime offenders
have had their cases dismissed and sealed.

A spokeswoman for Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr. said the office already
goes easy on firsttime offenders charged with misdemeanor marijuana

Bronx DA Robert Johnson said that while he supports legislation to
reduce the penalties for possession of marijuana, he, too, will
continue to enforce the law as written.
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