Los Angeles police are making fewer arrests, and many credit Proposition 47. Looking at arrest numbers over the past decade, the LAPD logged about 91,000 arrests in 2019. That’s down from 161,200 arrests in 2010. During the same period, the number of reported crimes increased by about 2.2%. Many of the “missing” arrests involve drug possession.
In 2014, voters decreased the classification of certain non-violent felonies to misdemeanors. Many of these crimes involved drug possession. Additionally, the LAPD says it has changed the way it polices the public. It now makes more use of alternative policing strategies to divert juvenile and first-time offenders from the criminal justice system. According to LAPD arrest statistics, juvenile arrests have dropped by 85% since 2010.
Even prior to the adoption of Proposition 47, arrests were decreasing, although reported crimes rose from 2014-2017. Since that time, reported crimes have decreased and are now approaching 2010 levels. While many possession crimes were downgraded to misdemeanors, drug crimes still account for plenty of arrests. In fact, DUI, domestic violence and drug possession were the top three reasons for arrests in 2019.
The way the LAPD records arrest information may account for some of the apparent change in arrest data. As time goes on, the department becomes more sophisticated in how it tracks arrest information. Additional information about arrests may also lead to changes in the way the department accounts for arrests. Opponents to Proposition 47 had argued that reducing penalties would increase the rate at which people committed those crimes. Researchers at the University of California also released a report suggesting that Proposition 47 did not change the rate at which people committed the newly reclassified crimes.
Los Angeles Drug Possession Lawyer
Proposition 47 also provides for reducing previous convictions for crimes previously classified as felonies. If you have an old felony conviction on your record, a knowledgeable drug possession lawyer can help. By having the court reclassify an old felony conviction as a misdemeanor, your record will no longer show a felony conviction. This can help you secure a job or housing more easily. It might also help with federal student loans and other benefits that require criminal history disclosure.
When you’ve been arrested for a drug crime or any other offense, hire an experienced attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend takes cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California. Mr. Helfend is a top-rated defender and will fight aggressively for you in court.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County drug possession case.
Photo Credit: quotecatalog.com, via Flickr.com