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South Dakota, other states, decriminalize some drugs, legalize others

If you have ever been caught with drugs, then you may be interested in how this year’s election has affected drug laws in South Dakota and other states since the changes in other states will potentially influence your own in the future.

2020 has been a year of drug law reforms. South Dakota’s residents voted to legalize cannabis during the 2020 election. In Oregon, small-scale possession of any drug, even those like meth, cocaine and heroin, is now decriminalized. Even in Washington, D.C., there were changes; ayahuasca and shrooms have been decriminalized in the district.

Why is the decriminalization or legalization of certain drugs and drug offenses so important?

The Oregon Criminal Justice Association stated that enacting laws in the way they did has the potential to decrease racial disparity in arrests by around 95%. According to the Drug Policy Alliance, the “war on drugs” has impacted racial groups differently, having a disproportionate effect on communities of color. This is just one reason why it’s important to protect your rights if you’re accused of a drug crime, especially if you are a person of color. You deserve a chance to defend yourself in court.

What should you do if you’re caught with drugs?

If you’re facing charges for a drug crime or drug-related DUI, you deserve a chance to defend yourself. Everyone’s situation is different, and you have the opportunity to fight the charges to work toward a plea deal or having the charges dropped altogether. Your attorney will work closely with you to help you get the best outcome.

Many people believe Amendment A does not take effect until July 1, 2021.  However, I believe that with the election verified the State does not have jurisdiction to continue to prosecute marijuana offenses involving less than one gram of raw marijuana and eight grams of concentrate.  I am making these motions in cases today.