SEATTLE (AP) — Five years after Washington state legalized marijuana, Seattle officials say they’re moving to automatically clear past misdemeanor convictions for pot possession. San Francisco recently took the same step.

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and City Attorney Pete Holmes say they want to help undo damage from the drug war they say resulted in unfairly high arrests targeting minority communities.

Several U.S. cities and states have in recent years allowed people to petition to have their pot convictions vacated or sealed.

But Seattle and San Francisco appear to be the only major jurisdictions erasing convictions en masse.

Holmes says he expects to clear 500 to 600 convictions dating to 1997.

Seattle has long had a tolerant approach to low-level pot crimes.

Holmes hasn’t prosecuted them since taking office in 2010.

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast rewritten or redistributed.)


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Watch & Listen LIVE