ACLU says reducing pot fines will reduce burden on criminal justice system

The ACLU of Wisconsin is one of the big supporters of reducing marijuana possession fines in Milwaukee. Chris Ahmuty - the ACLU executive director - said the current fine structure is excessive. It can range from $250-$500 - he said it usually falls at $350. That doesn't include any potential court costs.

The ACLU also said the enforcement system is riddled with racial disparities. Ahmuty said African-Americans are four times more likely to get arrested for marijuana possession than a white person. He said this overloads the criminal justice system.

\"It harms people who are arrested, and has consequences on their wallets but also on their job prospects, their educational career,\" ACLU of Wisconsin Executive Director Chris Ahmuty said. \"It also harms the criminal justice system in that it diverts police from doing more important work.\"

The ACLU thinks the change will ultimately pass the Milwaukee Common Council when it comes back up in June.

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