Chicago to Relax Low-Level Cannabis Possession Charges

Chicago and its environs are planning to change how it will deal with low-level drug charges, according to Sally Daly, a spokeswoman for Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez.

Those charged with a misdemeanor for possession of marijuana will have their cases dismissed if they have fewer than three arrests or citations. Low-level charges like these amounted to 15,000 cases last year in Cook County, which comprises Chicago and many surrounding suburbs.

The main focus of the program will be an alternative prosecution system designed to divert repeat low-level drug offenders out of the criminal justice system. The program, the first of its kind, will target those with non-violent Class 4 felony possession charges and link them with social service agencies in lieu of pursuing further criminal charges. Spokeswoman Daly stated that these changes will not apply to pending cases.

Class 4 felony possession charges made up 25 percent of felony cases in Cook County last year.

Mayor Rahm Emmanuel stated in support of the ordinance that it would free up police resources to focus on more serious crimes.


Photo Credit: Mr.TinDC

Exclusive offer from our sponsor:

Get daily news insights in your inbox. Subscribe


Latest Cannabis News

View all news Get email updates

Featured Business Profiles

Create a profile View all categories

From Our Partners

New to Cannabis? Start Here.

The Ganjapreneur beginner's guide to all things cannabis.

Business Index

Find and connect with cannabis-friendly service providers:

Website & branding by the Ganjapreneur in-house agency:

Blue Dream - Uplifted cannabis industry branding & marketing.

Uplifted cannabis industry branding & marketing.