One Cop Wrote 80% of Seattle's Pot Tickets

Internal investigation by city police reveals one officer's anti-marijuana mission

By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 31, 2014 12:33 PM CDT

(Newser) – Pot makes some people paranoid, but Seattle residents weren't imagining that one particular cop was handing out more than his fair share of marijuana citations. A notice posted by the chief of police on the police department's website yesterday said an officer was reassigned after an internal review discovered he had penned 66 out of 83 of the city's toking-in-public tickets in the first half of 2014, reports the AP. The department also recently revealed that homeless constituents received about 46% of public pot use tickets, while African-Americans received 36%, even though they only constitute 8% of the city's population, according to KOMO News.

The unnamed officer occasionally added his own personal statements to his tickets, noting that Washington's legalization law was "silly" and even admitting that he flipped a coin on at least one occasion to figure out which citizen to crack down on for cannabis use—adults are allowed to partake recreationally in the state, but not out in the open. Some of the officer's notes were made out to "Petey Holmes," a reference to City Attorney Peter Holmes, who also happens to be a legalization advocate, notes KOMO. "I am personally very sorry that apparently a significant number of homeless individuals were inconvenienced by an officer's apparent attempt to get at me," Holmes said in a statement last night.

One officer in Seattle wrote about 80% of Seattle's marijuana tickets in the first half of 2014.
One officer in Seattle wrote about 80% of Seattle's marijuana tickets in the first half of 2014.   (Shutterstock)
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