While we San Francisco residents have been constantly bombarded with news of Russian collusion, errant tweets from a compromised president, our eroding democracy, mass shootings almost every week and oh yeah, our mayoral election; the following piece of news has flown under the radar of many, including those who work or are somehow affiliated with the Bay Area cannabis industry or have ever been jailed for pot possession.
The San Francisco District Attorney’s Office has recently announced it is proactively applying Proposition 64, which legalized recreational use of marijuana for adults ages 21 years or older earlier this year, to all eligible misdemeanor and felony marijuana convictions.
The office is proactively dismissing and sealing 3,038 marijuana misdemeanors and reviewing, recalling and resentencing up to 4,940 felony marijuana convictions which were sentenced prior to Proposition 64’s passage in November 2016. In San Francisco, individuals eligible under Prop. 64 do not have to file a petition or appear in court to initiate the dismissal or declassification of their prior marijuana convictions.
If you or someone you know whose prior eligible conviction(s) may be impediments to furthering their employment prospects or other opportunities, please inform them of this program. Drug convictions can bar someone from gainful employment as we housing and voting rights that defacto slavery (i.e. incarceration) denies.
How It works (from the website:)
“If a member of the public believes that his/her prior marijuana conviction should be dismissed or reclassified by the DA’s office, they are encouraged to contact the DA by phone (415-553-1751) or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) DA office will only provide information to those who are calling about themselves. The caller will have to provide his/her name and date of birth before any information can be provided.
If the person’s name appears on the list of individuals whose prior convictions have been dismissed, they will be sent an electronic copy of dismissal documents via email if they would like.
If the person’s name does not appear on the list but they believe they are eligible for dismissal or reclassification under Prop. 64, their name, date of birth, and a court number (if they have it) will be taken. The DA’s office will further inquire about the person’s eligibility and take additional steps to dismiss or reclassify the individual’s conviction if appropriate.”
For complete information about the program, including eligibility and the application process click the link here.
My name is Petey Wheatstraw, also known as Charles Stevens. I’m an avid marijuana smoker, writer, devoted father and non-profit minion– not necessarily in that order. A Chicago native I’ve lived off and on in the Bay Area since 1996. Seven years ago I finally settled here to capture the changing face of our communities.