Hawaii House Passes Bill to Expunge Some Criminal Records Including Low-Level Cannabis Possession

Hawaii’s House has advanced a bill to facilitate state-led expungement of certain criminal records, potentially affecting over 36,000 individuals with minor cannabis possession charges.

Full story after the jump.

Hawaii’s House on Tuesday passed a bill to create a free, state-initiated, process for expunging certain criminal records, including arrests and convictions for promoting a detrimental drug in the third degree, Honolulu Civil Beat reports. The measure could expunge charges for more than 36,000 people arrested in the state for possessing less than 3 grams of cannabis, an offense decriminalized in 2019. 

There are more than 53,000 arrest records under the promoting a detrimental drug statute in the state’s criminal database but only about 10,000 of those arrests resulted in convictions, the report says. Not everyone charged under the law would be eligible for the full expungement due to other offenses.   

The Hawaii Criminal Justice Data Center (HCJDC) already manages a record expungement program by application for non-convictions and individuals convicted of certain first-time drug, property, and alcohol offenses are eligible under the program with a court order, the report says. The HCJDC receives about 1,440 requests for expungement per year and approves about 1,080 with about three-quarters resulting in full expungement; the remaining are partial expungements or rejected.  

The measure, which also includes provisions requiring the HCJDC to submit biannual reports to the Legislature until all records are expunged, moves next to the state Senate. 

Get daily cannabis business news updates. Subscribe

Have an additional perspective to share? Send us a message to let us know, and if your comment is chosen by our editors it could be featured here.


Ganjapreneur is made possible by our partners:

Latest Cannabis News

View all news Get email updates

Featured Business Profiles

Create a profile View all categories

From Our Partners