Prop 64 & You
Most of the attention of California’s Prop 64, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, has been focused on the legalization of recreational cannabis use for adults 21 and up.
A lesser publicized, yet equally impactful part of Prop 64, aims to retroactively reduce or eliminate prior marijuana felony and misdemeanor convictions. Starting November 9, 2016, individuals can begin to petition the court to reduce or remove their previous convictions.
How Does Prop 64 Work?
Prop 64 employs a similar method of reduction that was previously utilized after the passage of Proposition 47, where a defendant will be presumed to be eligible for reduction or elimination, unless the prosecution can demonstrate through “clear and convincing evidence that the petition does not satisfy the criteria.”
It is important to note that this only applies to a defendant’s eligibility, not their “suitability” for reduction or elimination. In order to prove that a defendant is not suitable for reduction or elimination, the prosecution must demonstrate that the such reduction would create an “unreasonable risk of danger to public safety.”
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Do You Need an Attorney to Petition for Reduction Under Prop 64?
This all depends on the circumstances surrounding your case. In most cases, people with prior convictions of possession do not have additional criminal convictions and may not require the assistance of an attorney. However, for many others who have prior drug-related convictions and/or any other misdemeanor or felony convictions, it advisable to consult with an attorney to evaluate your odds of successful petition.
Where to Look For Help
The Prop 64 Clinic is a volunteer run organization that helps individuals clear their prior marijuana offenses. The Prop 64 Clinic conducts case evaluations and provides individuals with resources to navigate the criminal expungement and reduction process. The Prop 64 Clinic is open to individuals of all income levels. In the upcoming weeks The Prop 64 Clinic will hold free legal clinics in and around the greater San Diego area. For more information contact The Prop 64 Clinic.