A group of mothers are banding together to ask Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh to decriminalize marijuana and shift police focus to solving homicides.
The organization Mothers of Murdered Sons and Daughters United (MOMS) unveiled a new billboard with a simple message. The billboard simply says, “Mayor Pugh, stop pot arrests. Solve murders instead.” The billboard is on the side of a truck that will circle Baltimore's City Hall and police headquarters all day Thursday.
The debate around marijuana decriminalization in Baltimore began a few weeks ago when a state attorney representing Baltimore said she would no longer prosecute people for marijuana possession. Mayor Pugh said that while she supported the idea, she didn't support the policy. And Baltimore police said they would continue using the same policies regardless of the prosecutor's decision.
MOMS argues that shifting police priorities from marijuana arrests to murder cases would help lower the rate of unsolved homicides in Baltimore. And statistics say that's true. A study from 2018 found that in states where marijuana is legal, the rate of unsolved cases by police officers decreases. And yet still police officers insist on continuing to arrest people for marijuana crimes while far more serious cases go unsolved.
Did these people never see The Wire? They weren't wasting time on marijuana on that show!
(h/t Baltimore Sun)