U.S. Marijuana Arrests Fall to Nearly Two-Decade Low

graphic-arrestsNewly released FBI data shows that arrests for simple marijuana possession in the United States fell to nearly a two-decade low in 2015.

Marijuana arrests totaled 574,641 last year, a figure which represents a 25 percent drop from 2007 when arrests for marijuana possession topped out at nearly 800,000.

The numbers also show police have been making more arrests for cocaine and heroin, along with other non-narcotic drugs.

The Drug Policy Alliance said in a statement that marijuana arrests are “the engine driving the U.S. war on drugs” adding that “the huge number of marijuana arrests every year usurps scarce law enforcement, criminal justice and treatment resources at enormous cost to taxpayers.”

The American Civil Liberties Union estimated in a 2013 report that the cost of marijuana possession enforcement in the U.S. was roughly $3.6 billion.

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