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City of Buffalo to stop enforcement of low-level marijuana crimes

Mayor makes call during State of the City

February 16, 2019 - 6:56 am
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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - City of Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown directed the Buffalo Police Department to stop the enforcement of low level marijuana offenses.

READ MORE: MAYOR BROWN DELIVERS 2019 STATE OF THE CITY

The mayor said he wants enforcement to stop because of the upcoming legalization of marijuana statewide this year.

"We need to adjust how we police," Brown said. "We're concerned about criminalizing people potentially ahead of a process that will decriminalize marijuana. This is another one of our efforts to reach out to the community and to build the relationship between our police department and the community. For quite some time, our police department has really de-prioritized arrests of low-level marijuana (offenses)."

Buffalo Police Captain Jeff Rinaldo said there were less than 200 low-level marijuana arrests last year. 

"Generally, marijuana is found after an arrest for other things such as robberies, assaults, domestics," Rinaldo said. "It hasn't been a priority."

 

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