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Gallup Poll Finds Majority Of Americans Favor Marijuana Legalization

For the first time since polls have been taken on the subject, a significant majority of the country believes that marijuana ought to be legalized. The most recent survey — conducted by Gallup — found that 58 percent of Americans are in favor of marijuana legalization.

Gallup first began collecting data regarding marijuana legalization in 1969. At the time, just 12 percent of Americans were in favor of legalizing the controlled substance. The most recent survey may not come as a surprise to many, as states across the country have taken action recently to decriminalize possession of small quantities of marijuana or reduce the penalties associated with the crime.

Gallup attributes this increase in acceptance toward legalizing the drug to a corresponding rise in the number of people who report having used the substance. In 2012, the survey found that 38 percent of Americans had used marijuana at some point in their lives.

According to the report, young people are more likely to favor legalizing marijuana. While those between the ages of 18 and 29 are the most likely — with 67 percent supporting legalization — even a majority of those between 50 and 64 years of age now support legalizing marijuana in the U.S. Those over 65 years of age are now the only age group in which a majority continues to oppose such measures.

Fight Marijuana Charges In New York

While there may be widespread support among Americans for legalizing marijuana, it is critical for individuals to be aware of the marijuana laws in their state, as they continue to be enforced heavily.

In New York, the penalties vary depending on the quantity of marijuana found on the individual and whether he or she has previously been convicted of a similar offense.

For instance, the penalties associated with possessing less than 25 grams of marijuana are the least severe. Upon a first offense, an individual can face a fine of up to $100. The fine increases to a maximum of $200 upon a second offense. If someone is convicted on three occasions, he or she may face up to 15 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.

If an individual is found in possession in public view, however, the penalties are more severe. In such cases, he or she may face up to 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $250.

Individuals convicted of possessing in excess of 25 grams of marijuana may face more severe penalties, including misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on the amount found in their possession. The most severe penalties are reserved for those found in possession of more than 10 pounds of marijuana. In such cases, an individual may face up to 15 years in jail and a fine of up to $250.

Contact A Lawyer At The Law Office Of Luke Scardigno

If you are currently facing charges of marijuana possession in Queens, New York, you should be aware of your rights. Consulting with a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney will ensure a strong defense is mounted on your behalf. Please contact my office for a free consultation at 718-414-6186.