The most frequent offenses recorded in The Daily Campus police blotter are those that pertain to arrests stemming from possession of marijuana less than 1/2 an ounce.
Few arrests for drug possessions with marijuana have amounted to more than $500 in bail, unless there is an inclusive charge of resisting arrest or underage possession of alcohol, which may bring charges up to $1,000.
For larger “stings,” in which more than four ounces have been found on the premise, fines can be upwards of $150,000 worth of bail.
Last April, there were two instances in which the police arrested men with possession of drugs, drug paraphernalia and paraphernalia in a drug factory with the intent to sell. The man who was arrested for the possession of narcotics, hallucinogens and marijuana received a bail sentencing of $150,000 while the man arrested for intent to sell of solely marijuana was sentenced to a $100,000 bail.
Recent trends in national legislation have shown that marijuana is becoming less criminalized, with legalization in four states for recreational use and legalization for medical use in 18 states, including Connecticut, according to governing.com.
The push now in these states is to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, like in Delaware where state law makers allocate a civil fine for private use under one ounce instead of more severe penalties, according to governing.com.
Possession of large quantities with the intent to sell is what allows for large fines, fees and sentences to be levied on individuals, like those arrested this past April and the man arrested this past week.
Students feel that the campus police have been too harsh on students using marijuana and feel that campus policies should follow the trends on the national level.
“I feel bad for them,” third-semester pathobiology major Nena Coulombe said. “It depends on how much it is. Arrest seems extreme.”
Elizabeth Charash is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.