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NYC marijuana arrests still top 50,000 despite push for changes

As we reported late last year, over 50,000 people per year are arrested in the New York City area for pot possession. Despite some efforts by politicians and drug policy groups to curb arrests on such drug charges when there is a lack of evidence, arrests for marijuana possession actually rose slightly last year, from about 50,400 to 50,700.

More people are arrested by the NYPD for pot possession than for any other crime. Those arrests account for nearly one in seven total arrests. The arrests have increased dramatically over the last several years. For example, reports Fox News, 227,000 people were arrested in the last five years. That's the rough equivalent of the number arrested between 1978 and 2001 combined.

According to a law dating back to 1977, small amounts of marijuana must be in clear view to merit an arrest. But many have complained that police are arresting people when they find marijuana in people's pockets after frisking them.

As a result of the continued criticism, the police commissioner last September issued a reminder to officers that they cannot arrest people if the marijuana "was disclosed to public view at an officer's direction," according to Fox News.

It's likely that the number of arrests will drop when this year's data is ultimately released. In the last weeks of the year after the commissioner's reminder, marijuana arrests fell 13 percent when compared to the year before. However, advocates are saying that people continue to be arrested even when pot is not in public view. Such violations should only result in a ticket, not an arrest.

Source: Fox News, "Pot arrests top 50K despite NYPD order," Feb. 1, 2012

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Frequently Asked Questions Personal Injury In New York City

    • Q: I've been injured — now what? A: First, see an experienced doctor. Your injuries should be taken care of before you even consider making a claim against someone for causing them. Make sure you are receiving top-quality health care. Keep all information from medical visits — good records of your injury and your treatments are vital for your case if you decide to pursue legal action. Then, call us to schedule your free consultation.
    • How long can I wait before I file a claim for my personal injury? You should seek help with your claim immediately. Depending on the state you live in, most cases must be filed within four years of the accident, but the sooner you contact us, the sooner we can help you build a strong legal claim. If you've been denied Social Security or disability benefits, your appeal must be filed soon after you receive your denial notification. Call us for assistance and an assessment of your case.
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    • If I get hurt on the job, what should I do? Tell your supervisor or someone in your human resources department immediately, and then get help with your injuries. It's imperative that you file a report about the accident with your employer, or you may be denied any disability or workers' compensation benefits for your injuries. Then, file your workers' compensation documents according to your company's guidelines. If you are turned down, give us a call to get your case assessed. We'll help you get the compensation you deserve for injuries on the job.
    • What should I do if I was injured on a construction site? You should take the same steps as anyone injured at any other job. File an injury report and file for workers' compensation benefits. If you are denied benefits or mistreated by your employer, contact our law firm immediately. Also, contact us immediately if your injury might have been caused by a party other than your employer such as a product manufacturer or another party on a construction site. You might have an underlying personal injury claim.
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    • If injured in a police misconduct/brutality incident, what should be done? Get names of witnesses. Take photos of injuries. Get immediate professional medical attention. Contact our Bronx-based police brutality attorney today.
    • What actions should I NOT take when speaking with a police officer? Don't say, "I know my rights," "I'm going to file a complaint/sue" or "I pay your salary." Don't resist or fight if you're going to be arrested even if the cop is wrong, or he or she doesn't tell you why.
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