Sessions: Softened approach to drug enforcement led to surge in drug abuse and violent crime

In a recent letter sent to and published by The Washington Post, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions elaborated upon his plan to be tougher on drugs and drug offenders. Sessions blamed the United States’ supposedly rising rate in violent crime on the Justice Department’s increasingly relaxed approach to drug offenders and offenses. According to Sessions, drug prosecutions have decreased from 2011 to 2016 by 23 percent, while the average sentence for a convicted drug offender has decreased 18 percent from 2009 to 2016. This is what he believes is causing the “disturbing trend that could reverse decades of progress,” as violent crime is rising across the country. This rise in violent crime has made Sessions issue a memorandum to all federal prosecutors in which he authorizes prosecutors to charge offenses “as Congress intended.” This memorandum is supposed to allow prosecutors to apply the laws fairly while still exercising discretion, yet seems like it is meant more to punish minor drug offenders and minorities. Sessions’ misguided efforts are due to his fear of this “crime surge” being an ongoing trend in America, and apparently this policy will improve minority neighborhoods and communities that are “disproportionately impacted by violent drug trafficking.” Yet, Sessions does not seem to want to address the root cause of the oppression faced by minority communities, and is instead content attacking minor drug offenders and users who he claims are “infecting their communities.” Jeff Sessions and his “time-tested policy” are supposed to help, but will end up punishing small-time drug users as the United States punitive policies once again become the focus of our justice system. Steven J. Pisani is a Denver Criminal Defense Attorney, Denver DUI Lawyer and Denver Criminal Defense Attorney.

 

The Cannabist, Jeff Sessions, June 19, 2017
Link: http://www.thecannabist.co/2017/06/19/jeff-sessions-drug-enforcement-violent-crime/81865/#disqus_thread

New Colorado Law Allows for Medical Marijuana Use While on Probation

In the past week, Governor Hickenlooper signed into law a bill that would allow Medical Marijuana use for Colorado offenders who are on probation. The bill won a unanimous in the Colorado Legislature and goes into effect immediately. Medical Marijuana has been legal in Colorado for the past 15 years but was still illegal to use for those on probation. Marijuana is still illegal under Federal Law and probation did not allow the probationer to violate ANY law, city, state or federal. Now, those who have a valid prescription for medical cannabis can continue to use their medicine except in a few particular circumstances.  The Legislative analysts who conducted research for the bill didn’t know how many had been cited for violating probation as a result of Marijuana-related drug testing. If you have criminal charges and might be facing probation, don’t hesitate to contact The Law Offices of Steven J. Pisani, LLC.

Source: HOUSE BILL 15-1267

*This information is not be construed as legal advice or to advocate the use of marijuana or any other controlled substance. Certain conditions may apply that would still keep a probationer from using medical marijuana without violating their probation. Please contact a licensed Colorado Attorney to explain the details of this law change.

 

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