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Fine Set for Smoking Pot in Public in Seattle

Posted by Kevin Trombold DUI Defense Attorney | Dec 18, 2013 | 0 Comments

Smoking Marijuana in Public Places in Seattle Will Cost You.
Washington residents will soon be able to smoke marijuana recreationally without violating state law. But they still won't be able to light up wherever they choose.

This week, the Seattle City Council announced that it had passed legislation which established the fine for consuming pot in a public place. The amount of the fine will be set at $27, which is the same as for the offense of drinking alcohol in public. However, the council also stated that law enforcement officers should provide a warning "whenever practical" before issuing a citation - meaning that cops probably won't be pulling out their ticket books the instant they see someone smoking marijuana.

This announcement by the city council presents an opportunity to clarify some of the rules regarding pot consumption in Washington next year.First, the $27 fine obviously only applies to infractions within the Seattle city limits. Other municipalities have the right to set differing fine amounts for public marijuana consumption - although those fines cannot exceed $50 according to the new statutes.

Also, the act of smoking pot is also regulated by ordinances prohibiting all smoking in public places. So even if you aren't technically smoking a joint "in public," the codes that govern the building or outdoor space where you are lighting up may ban that activity.

Since the fine is for "consuming marijuana in public," that means that technically speaking, people are not allowed to vaporize pot or even eat a marijuana-infused brownie in a public place. That said, you probably shouldn't expect cops to thoroughly inspect all baked goods that they may see.

About the Author

Kevin Trombold DUI Defense Attorney

Highly rated by former clients, who praise his warm, knowledgeable courtside manner and his fierce determination to reduce or eliminate charges. An accomplished speaker, author, and leader in DUI defense statewide Kevin is well respected by judges, prosecutors, and other attorneys across the State of Washington for his expertise, integrity, and knowledge in the complicated forensic science area of impaired driving allegations.


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