Dallas Police push away from Drug Arrests
If Dallas Police Chief Eddie Garcia gets his way, his officers will no longer cite or arrest most people who are found to be in possession of fewer than two ounces of marijuana.
The department will make its proposal to the Dallas City Council Public Safety Committee on Tuesday.
Marijuana possession arrests made up 7% of all arrests by Dallas officers during the first three weeks of February, 183 of the 1,996 arrests through February 24, according to data that will be presented to council members. And 80% of those marijuana arrests, 140 of the 183, were for possession of fewer than two ounces.
Supporting details of the proposal to the city council state that the purpose of the initiative is to lessen the burden and the amount of time Dallas police officers spend when arresting and citing people deemed to be in possession of marijuana for personal use.
As for enforcing the other laws, Garcia said neighbors may be calling police to help with those issues in their community.Mr. Garcia said he is working with experts he consulted at his previous chief post in San Jose, California on revisions to Dallas violent crime reduction plans.
When talking to Cali Hydro News Interviewers He said quote:
“You’ve got to be sure that individuals know that we’re not going to tolerate violence. We’re not going to tolerate this type of crime in our city.”
Garcia said he intends to have a new violent crime plan by April while also working to decriminalize unneeded possession drug charges so-long as no intentions to sell drugs is affirmed by officers on site.
San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia, center, poses for a photo at San Jose Police Department in San Jose, Calif. Mr. Garcia is the first the first Latino to lead the department!
There are still several scenarios where someone with less than two ounces of marijuana would be charged with a crime, including:
- The possession is believed to be indicative of distribution, including the marijuana being packaged in several smaller baggies.
- The presence of digital scales or packs of empty baggies.
- If the person is observed in hand-to-hand distribution.
- If the offender is also in possession of a firearm.