Amendment approval spurs policy change from Prosecutors Office

Mike Bushnell
Northeast News

The Jackson County Prosecutors Office announced Tuesday morning it would no longer prosecute marijuana crimes since Missouri voters overwhelmingly approved Amendment 2 last week, legalizing medical marijuana.

Roughly 66% of voters approved Amendment 2 at the polls last Tuesday. Missouri follows over thirty other states who have legalized marijuana in some form.

“Voters were discerning in considering the issue,” County Prosecutor Jean Peters-Baker stated in a Tuesday morning release. “That mandate from voters is directing this shift in our office,” Baker said. “This changing attitude toward marijuana is something we have been seeing anecdotally from our juries for some time.”

In 2015, Attorneys General in Oklahoma and Nebraska sued the state of Colorado for what they said was a constant flow of illegal marijuana coming across the state’s borders, citing increased law enforcement costs in border counties that were dealing with a sharp uptick in traffic stops of people transporting the drug across state lines which is considered a felony. In March of 2016, however, the Supreme Court refused to hear the Oklahoma-Nebraska suit.

Some exceptions will remain, including selling or distributing the drug without the proper authority and cases of drugged driving where possession or use results in harm to a child.

Baker also announced her office will undertake two public safety campaigns, which includes warning caregivers to keep packaged edible marijuana away from children and another campaign focusing on drugged driving, stressing that driving under the influence is still a crime.

“Voters spoke very clearly and overwhelmingly,” Baker stated, “but we need to keep the drug – like any drug – away from the kids, and driving while high is a serious crime that puts us all at risk.”

Jack Cardetti, Spokesman for New Approach Missouri, the organization that backed Constitutional Amendment 2, praised the policy change by the Prosecutor’s office.

“We wholeheartedly support the announcement today that the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office will no longer be prosecuting simple marijuana possession cases” Cardetti said. “Obviously, the announcement today goes beyond medical marijuana, but we appreciate the respect and deference Prosecuting Attorney Jean Peters-Baker has shown the voters of Jackson County.”

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures web site, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Idaho are the only states with no public marijuana access programs.

Comments are closed.

  • Charges Filed in Sunday’s 12th Terrace Shooting

    14 hours ago

    Michael Bushnell Northeast News Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters-Baker has charged an eighteen year-old man in connection with the murder […]

    Three Mayoral Candidates respond to questions from Northeast Forum

    February 20th, 2019

    Jolie Justus, Scott Wagner, and Phil Glynn responded to the remaining questions posed at the Northeast Mayoral Forum.

    KC Superman hangs up his cape

    February 20th, 2019

    Elizabeth Orosco Northeast News In a coffee shop full of business suits and faces buried in laptops, one red cape […]

    Missouri Legislators discuss provisions of medical marijuana in Jefferson City

    February 20th, 2019

    Elizabeth Orosco Northeast News More discussion on Amendment 2 is taking place in Jefferson City. Placed on the November ballot […]

    Artist Profile: Tyson Schroeder

    February 20th, 2019

    Johanna Pounds Editorial Assistant Northeast News Tyson Schroeder is a local painter, editorialist, and musician who has been working in […]

  • Women in Jazz Month 2019

    February 20th, 2019

    Sponsored content American Jazz Museum March is Women and Jazz Month, and the Blue Room at the American Jazz Museum […]

    Payless Shoesource closing all US stores

    February 20th, 2019

    Northeast News Payless Shoesource announced last Friday that they will be closing all of their stores across the US, which […]

    Smart Sewer project works to improve wastewater system

    February 20th, 2019

    Elizabeth Orosco Northeast News The City of Kansas City will begin implementing the construction phase of the Smart Sewer Program […]

    KCPD respond to homicide in Sheffield neighborhood

    February 20th, 2019

    Michael Bushnell Northeast News Kansas City Police Officers responded to the 6400 block of East 12th street Sunday morning, February […]

    Two Kansas City women have been arrested, charged in connection with Tuesday’s shooting at Central High School

    February 14th, 2019

    Jamya D. Norfleet and Taylor McMillon face felony charges in connection with Tuesday night’s shooting.

  • What’s Happening

    retorts illustrated by bryan stalder

    The White Co. delivers innovation through history

    Michael Bushnell Northeast News “Our standard has always been to build a car able to surmount any road conditions which […]

    The will of the people and why it matters

    Part of the responsibility of living in a constitutional republic is an engaged electorate. An engaged electorate, theoretically, ensures that […]