A study shows that every 45 seconds in 2014, that an arrest was made for marijuana reaching a total of almost 800k arrests made recently released by FBI data.
The data also showed that marijuana accounted for 44.9 of all drug arrests. Of the arrests for marijuana, 88.4 percent were for possession alone. Police arrested more people for drug crimes than any other category in 2014.
To put the numbers into perspective, in 2013, police only made 693,482 arrests for marijuana. The recent uptick does not indicate a steady increase over time. In 2012, for example, there were 749,825 marijuana arrests
, and in 2011, 757,969. The rate listed in 2013 actually is the lowest since 1998, when police arrested 682,885 users.
Keith Humphreys, a psychiatrist from Stanford University, noted that although possession arrests for cannabis increased slightly in the early 2000s, from 2007 to 2012, the rate has declined by 42 percent.
“It’s unacceptable that police still put this many people in handcuffs for something that a growing majority of Americans think should be legal,” Tom Angell, chairman of the Marijuana Majority stated.
“A record number of states are expected to vote on legalizing marijuana next year, so we hope and expect to see these numbers significantly dropping soon. There’s just no good reason that so much police time and taxpayer money is spent punishing people for marijuana when so many murders, rapes and robberies go unsolved.”