With Help of Tech, San Francisco Clears 8,000 Marijuana Convictions

San Francisco has wiped away 8,132 marijuana convictions dating all the way back to 1975 with the help of a computer algorithm.

The county district attorney’s office partnered with non-profit Code for America for the project. The organization “uses the principles and practices of the digital age to improve how government serves the American public, and how the public improves government,” according to its mission statement.

One of the lesser-known provisions of Proposition 64 was that it gave individuals the ability to reduce or expunge past convictions related to pot. Last year, Jerry Brown signed legislation that would make district attorneys responsible for automatically expunging qualifying convictions. The trick for counties has been finding a timely and efficient way to do so.

The expungement of 8,000 records via algorithms “makes San Francisco the first county in the country to complete the automated marijuana record clearance process," according to San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón.

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Tuesday, May 14, 2019 - 16:18

You’re professional. You’re responsible. You would never get high at work. But for the population at large, toking on the job may be more common than you think.