Have you seen our latest analysis? Our data shows that law enforcement officers continue to arrest and prosecute thousands of Oklahomans for having small amounts of marijuana despite voter and legislatively approved reforms aimed at reducing harmful contact with the criminal justice system.
Key findings in the analysis include:
- Over 4,500 Oklahomans were arrested annually for marijuana possession as recently as 2020.
- Oklahomans owe an average of $1,859 in court fines and fees per arrest for marijuana use. This means Oklahomans paid over $8.3 million in fines and fees for possessing a product that is being used legally by medical patients in Oklahoma and recreationally in 21 other states. Additionally, data from the Drug Policy Alliance indicates that each arrest for marijuana possession takes two and a half hours of labor for law enforcement, meaning that Oklahoma law enforcement agencies spend more than 11,250 hours arresting Oklahomans for small amounts of marijuana every year.
- Approximately 60,000 Oklahomans have marijuana convictions or unexpunged dismissals on their records. This is the population eligible for State Question 820’s retroactive expungement clause.
- Marijuana arrests and prosecutions disproportionately impact Black men. Although data indicates that White and Black Americans use marijuana products at similar rates, Black men in Oklahoma are five times as likely as White men to be arrested for simple marijuana possession. Black men are also twice as likely to be sentenced for marijuana related crimes as White men. Black Oklahomans make up approximately 25 percent of the Oklahomans with marijuana-related criminal records despite making up only eight percent of the population.