GRAND RAPIDS TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A Grand Rapids man busted with $1,040 and enough marijuana for a felony charge was supposed to be sentenced Friday.
Then he was told to not even show up at 63rd District Court.
The fallout from Tuesday's vote to legalize marijuana in Michigan continues. It has led to plenty of confusion — prosecutors considering dropping pending pot cases, and some judges putting them on hold.
"I don't want some guy, because he came in on a Wednesday, to plead guilty to something that Thursday is going to be zero. So, we're kind of taking a wait-and-see approach," said 63rd District Court Judge Sara Smolenski.
It was Smolenski who was supposed to sentence the 23-year-old Grand Rapids man Friday.
The case started in August, when Kent County deputies found him parked at The Salvation Army on Alpine Avenue NW in Alpine Township. They found 2 grams of marijuana in his pants pockets and 28 grams in the console of his car, along with a scale and the money. It was enough to charge him with possession with intent to deliver marijuana.
That felony carries up to four years in prison. He pleaded guilty to a less serious misdemeanor charge of possession.
But under the new law, which is expected to go into effect in December, what the Grand Rapids man had would have been perfectly legal. The 30 grams he had is barely more than an ounce; the law allows more than twice that.
The Kent County prosecutor has said he's considering dropping pending use and possession cases, at least for people 21 years and older.
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