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Decriminalize low-level possession of marijuana in Killeen or keep the current laws in place?

Posted at 7:18 PM, Jun 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-13 20:18:15-04

Decriminalize low-level possession of marijuana in the city of Killeen or keep the current laws in place? It's something that local politicians, the city council, and even the police department have been debating for months.

One group even organized a petition and received around 2,500 signatures in favor of decriminalizing low-level possession of marijuana.

One local politician, Louie Minor, who is a Democratic candidate for Bell County Commissioner said it's more than just allowing marijuana to be used freely, it's about the people in the city.

He stated, “For whatever reason, the city of Killeen police department enforces marijuana more heavily to people of color.”

People of color account for 80 percent of marijuana convictions and in Killeen over 40 percent of the population is African American.

Shirley Flemind, a councilwoman in Killeen said, “So many of our minorities' lives have been ruined because the police department has apprehended them because they had less than 4 ounces of marijuana in their car ... just the smell of it can put them in jail.”

Despite that, there's still some resistance as many others in the city, including the Killeen Police Department see cons in decriminalizing marijuana.

Still, Minor said, “We know that marijuana usage is on par on all social and economic and racial spectrums but enforcement is not here in the city of Killeen."

Tomorrow in the city council meeting the council can approve decriminalization or it will go to a citizen vote.