Friday, December 19, 2014

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Protesters Rally Against Marijuana Arrests

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A group of New Yorkers took their protest over marijuana arrests to Mayor Michael Bloomberg's front door Wednesday.

Advocates rallied to call attention to what they called unfair enforcement of marijuana laws.

They said officers purposefully target people of color, claiming that 85 percent of those arrested are black or Latino.

Some accused the New York City Police Department of tricking people into showing marijuana during stop and frisks in order to charge them with a misdemeanor instead of just an infraction.

"It's a corruption of the intent of the law,” said City Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viverito. “That cannot stand. It should not stand. And again what we are seeing is young people under the age of 30 being criminalized unnecessarily. And at the end of the day it's an inefficient use of our city resources."

"My problem is that every policy that we always address for some reason affects communities that look like mine more than anybody else,” said City Councilman Jumaane Williams. “This is another case of it, and it's just sickening."

The NYPD denied any wrongdoing.

Commissioner Ray Kelly said officers are merely enforcing the law, and if opponents want to change the law they need to petition Albany. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP