Leah Sottile at the Willamette Week reports that 19yo Devontre Thomas is facing up to 1 year in prison on federal charges for possessing <1gram of cannabis. I wonder if the federal prosecutors know that 1g of marijuana doesn’t register on most scales? In fact, ask any marijuana dealer how much for a gram of weed and they might just give it to you. If it were me, at the minimum, I’d puff a bowl with you and send you off with a nug- which is standard practice for most weed loving Oregonians.
In her story Leah is quick to note the well known fact about racial disparities and marijuana arrests. She then points out that, “The prosecution of Thomas raises questions about the priorities of U.S. Attorney for Oregon Billy Williams, the state’s chief federal prosecutor.” Among them:
“Why are federal prosecutors, who claim that Oregon is a den of heroin, meth and opioid trafficking, spending time and resources to go after a teenager for such a small amount of pot?”
In any case, the fact that TWB has to report that a non-violent person faces federal charges and 1 year in jail for <1 gram of cannabis in a legalized state is appalling. Oregon’s Measure 91 to legalize weed in 2014 passed by a huge majority of (over 800,000) Oregonians voting to end cannabis prohibition.
Read the full story about Devontre here: