Marijuana is Legal in Arizona! – by Criminal Defense Attorney Marc J. Victor. You may already be aware that Arizona voters passed Proposition 207 legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes. Anyone paying attention knows it is long past time to finally end the foolish and immoral drug war. This misguided and anti-freedom drug war has been one of the biggest mistakes our country has ever made. In the midst of our chaotic world, finally legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes reminds us that sanity still exists.
Marijuana is Legal in Arizona!
As a result of this vote, adults peacefully using 1oz or less of marijuana on private property, or even growing up to six plants in a secured facility, are no longer criminals under Arizona law. Adults are also allowed to share their legal marijuana with other adults without the fear of being arrested and charged with a felony crime in Arizona’s courts. Cheers to the Arizona voters who got this one right!
Besides legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes, Proposition 207 commendably makes huge strides to right the wrongs of the past. Beginning on July 12, 2021, people who were arrested, charged, or convicted of possessing or transporting 2.5oz or less of marijuana in Arizona courts can petition the court to have their criminal records expunged. This expungement provision also applies to people who were arrested, charged, or convicted of growing up to six marijuana plants at their home for personal use.
Further, Proposition 207 directs Arizona’s courts to dismiss with prejudice all currently pending criminal prosecutions that would otherwise be eligible for expungement upon simply filing a motion to dismiss. People whose pending cases are dismissed can immediately petition for an expungement.
Proposition 207’s expungement provisions have the teeth to get the job done. A successful expungement petition vacates any conviction and restores all rights lost as a result of the marijuana conviction including the right to keep and bear arms. Moreover, the relevant law enforcement agencies and courts will be ordered to seal all records of the marijuana-related incident including the arrest.
A person who has received an expungement pursuant to Proposition 207 is legally permitted to deny ever having been arrested, prosecuted, or convicted of the relevant marijuana offense. Said another way, the expungement places, even the convicted person, in the same position as if the entire incident never happened. Even the state is not permitted to refer to or use any marijuana conviction that has been properly expunged.
It’s important to point out that Proposition 207 does not alter federal law. Currently, federal law criminalizes the possession, sale, or transportation of any amount of marijuana. However, federal criminal prosecutions for small amounts of marijuana, while legally possible, are exceedingly rare. Hopefully, soon, federal law will also change to reflect the majority of people in the United States who now support marijuana legalization.
The Attorneys For Freedom Law Firm actively supports the rights of competent adults to decide for themselves what substances they ingest. As such, we have been actively advocating for the legalization of recreational marijuana for over 25 years. We stand ready to assist people to file a legally appropriate Petition for Expungement. If you think you qualify for such an expungement, feel free to contact us for an evaluation of your legal position.