Minor Marijuana Possession Offenses to be No Longer Prosecuted in St. Louis County, Missouri

Minor marijuana possession offenses will no longer be criminally prosecuted in St. Louis County, according to a new policy put forth by the elected prosecutor Wesley Bell, who was sworn into office earlier this month.

St. Louis County is by far the most populated county in Missouri with nearly a million residents; this makes up almost 30% of all Missouri residents.

The new policy is similar to that of Jackson County (Kansas City) prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, who announced in November that her office would no longer prosecute marijuana possession violations.

Under state law the possession of more than ten grams of marijuana is classified as a criminal misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail. The new St. Louis County policy effects any marijuana possession case where the possession is deemed for personal use, even if it’s above this 10 gram threshold.

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Emily Watkins is a PhD student majoring in public policy. Emily has been a freelance editor for multiple websites, and has spent hundreds of hours volunteering to help legalize marijuana. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, and can be reached at Watkins.MarijuanaHerald@gmail.com