There is a confusion as to whether citations given in states with decriminalized marijuana laws should be counted as “arrests” in those areas. Therefore, counties are reporting different sets of numbers and everything we’ve been told is all up in the air.
The statistics are so uncertain that the Justice Department has launched an investigation into the matter.
The problem is a large one, because these numbers aide in creating policy around marijuana and law enforcement.
Maryland is a good example of the issue, with Montgomery County counting these citations as arrests and Baltimore city not counting them. This creates huge anomalies between the two locations.
Here’s a breakdown, via Marijuana Moment:
And then post decriminalization in 2014:
It’s unclear at this point what this correction will mean in the long term, but with Baltimore only reporting 10 arrests in 2020 and Montgomery reporting over a thousand, it will be sure to have some impact on the state of Maryland.
Read the full in-depth report at Marijuana Moment.