The Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that those convicted of past cannabis possession misdemeanors can have the charges erased from their record because the state decriminalized the substance in 2011. The ruling was unanimous, 7 to 0.
The court ruled in favor of Nicholas Menditto, overturning the ruling of a state Appellate Court which decided that Menditto couldn’t have his two cannabis possession convictions from 2009 removed from his record, despite the offenses no longer being criminal.
In 2011 Connecticut’s Legislature approved a bill, signed by Governor Dannel P. Malloy, which decriminalized the possession of up to half an ounce of cannabis, making it an $150 ticket rather than an arrestable misdemeanor (which can be raised to $500 for subsequent offenses, but can never result in jail-time or a criminal charge).
The Court’s ruling immediately sets precedent across the state, allowing anyone charged with possessing up to half an ounce of cannabis to have the charge removed from their record.