Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Opinion by Gerald Trumbule
If you’ve followed the marijuana legalization story as we’ve tried to do here over the years, you will have seen Rob Corry’s name many times. He participated in the creation of A64 in the first place, and is a very active activist attorney. Now he has created a line-by-line commentary on the results of the A64 Task Force Report that you can read here. I recommend that you take the time to read it all. Corry brings up an important topic that I haven’t seen elsewhere regarding the prisoners of the drug war:
The Drug War is Over, Prisoners of War Should be Released
The State should consider amnesty, pardon, or commutation of sentence for all individuals in Colorado currently serving a sentence of prison, jail, parole, or probation for any previous “crime” related to marijuana that is no longer a crime under Amendment 64, Article XVIII §16of the Colorado Constitution. Recently, Governor Hickenlooper appeared on public radio to agree that it was unjust for any person to serve a sentence for a previous marijuana “crime” that is no longer a crime, but claimed that his office and the Executive Branch lacked the resources to consider and issue gubernatorial pardons for individuals applying for said pardons under the pardon process. See Colorado Constitution, Article IV § 7; C.R.S. § 16-17-101 et seq.
Since the “War on Marijuana” is now over and Prisoners of War must released when any war is over, this law firm will donate our staff time–with no expense to the State or its taxpayers–to review and evaluate any pardon application and underlying criminal court file provided from the Governor’s office and provide a recommendation to the Governor as to whether the underlying criminal offense is no longer an offense, and whether a pardon should be issued to a particular POW. If the Governor is unwilling to work with us in the pardon process, the legislature could still pass an amnesty bill automatically commuting any marijuana-related sentence.
And we can start saving money as we defund the insane, racist war on drugs. How much could be saved at the City, County and State level? No one seems to know exactly how many people are in our prisons right now for possession, but it’s time to let them out.
at 12:29 PM
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