By Christopher Ingraham for The Washington Post. The nation’s law enforcement agencies are still arresting people for marijuana possession at near record-high rates, according to the latest national datareleased today by the FBI. In 2014, at least 620,000 people were arrested for simple pot possession — that’s 1,700 people per day, or more than 1 per minute. And that number is an undercount, because a handful of states either don’t report arrest numbers to the FBI, or do so only on a limited basis.
Nationwide, more than 1 in 20 arrests were for simple marijuana possession. Twenty years ago, near the dawn of the drug war, fewer than 2 percent of arrests were for pot possession. But that rate rose steadily throughout the 1990s and 2000s, even as those years saw a shift toward less-restrictive marijuana laws at the state level.