WASHINGTON, D.C. – The FBI released a new Uniform Crime Report today showing that nationwide, police made more than 693,000 marijuana arrests and more than 1.5 million total drug arrests in 2013. That’s one drug arrest every 21 seconds and one marijuana arrest every 45 seconds. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, a group of police, prosecutors, judges and other law enforcement officials opposed to the war on drugs, pointed to the figures as evidence that huge amounts of police resources are being misspent in pursuit of the war on drugs.
“Police made more drug arrests than for any other single category of crime. Meanwhile, only 64% of murders and 48% of violent crimes generally are being solved,” said Major Neill Franklin (Ret.) “We clearly have our priorities in the wrong place.”
Today's FBI report breaks down these drug arrests, shows that 82.3% of all drug arrests in 2013 were for possession only and 40.6% of all drug arrests were for possession of marijuana (87.9% of all marijuana arrests).
Marijuana arrests were down by more than 56,000 this year from 2012, perhaps showing the impact of smarter marijuana laws and states that have legalized, and while arrests for other drugs increased slightly, the overall number of arrests is down about 50,000 to 1,501,043 from 1,552,432 the year before.
Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) is a group of more than 100,000 law enforcement officials and other supporters who, after fighting the war on drugs, now advocate for its end.