back to article Talk about high tech: Tens of thousands of Cali marijuana convictions to go up in smoke, thanks to algorithms

More than 60,000 cannabis convictions in Los Angeles County are set to be overturned, thanks to computer algorithms. California passed the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA), also known as Prop 64, in 2016. As a result, folks over 21 years of age can legally grow and consume the devil's lettuce for recreational use in the US …

  1. Winkypop Silver badge

    Pass the judgy on the left hand side

    Weeding out the non criminals.

    About time.

    1. HildyJ Silver badge

      Re: Pass the judgy on the left hand side

      Too many programs are just token gestures. I find this one very spliffy. The fact that it gets the right wing types out of joint is a bonus.

  2. Chris G Silver badge


    That is his is retrospective. Does that his mean that overturning okd conictions will open up the possibility of compensation for those having paid fines or suffered consequences from arrest such as loss of their job etc?

    I can see some litigation coming when it's decided who should be sued.

    1. JetSetJim Silver badge

      Re: Interesting

      I doubt it - I suspect either they'll rely on the "it was a crime at the time, so this is just a writing off of criminal misdeeds" or the legislation to enact this will have provisions regarding this.

      Saying that, I'm sure a lawyer would be willing to try. There's enough people for a class action...

    2. Spanners Silver badge

      Re: Interesting

      when it's decided who should be sued

      Let me make it easy for you. They can't sue the main instigator because he is dead. On 17 June 1971, Richard Nixon got it going with a speech where he declared drug abuse to be "public enemy number one". He created a special action office to combat it.

      What was the motivation?

      Well I suspect that, although Watergate had not happened at that point, he was already a crook but the biggest motivation may have been they the perception was that the biggest users were "African Americans" and other people with too much melanin. Certainly the incarceration records show that it was a heavily used tool in the attempts to keep them in in their place.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Interesting

      Pretty sure they would have written the law so all it did was expunge the past records but not leave the state liable for people to sue. After all, they were convicted of something that was a crime at the time they did it, so they can hardly argue unfair prosecution like e.g. someone whose conviction was overturned by DNA evidence proving their innocence.

    4. Dal90

      Re: Interesting

      They're not overturning convictions. That stands.

      They're expunging the records of said convictions.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Finally a use for AI and automation

    Hash for the win

  4. davenewman

    Shown on Click

    There was a segment on BBC Click a year or more ago about the Code For America programme and interviews of people affected.

  5. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    This is America

    We need to see the algorithm - does it take the persons skin color (sic) into account? Throughout the US, if you are black and high you are much more likely to be convicted so we should see a black majority of of convictions eliminated ... but I wonder how it's going to work?

    I hope that it's fair but I'm not going to assume that it is.

  6. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Remove the convictions back to 1961?

    Lot of old hippies will be happy...

    1. Dal90

      Re: Remove the convictions back to 1961?

      Can't be true. One of the posters here laid the blame on all this to a Nixon speech in 1971.

  7. cdrcat

    The hippies have token over

    Why have grown-up hippies from the 60’s and 70’s not had more influence on politics?

    1. John Geek

      Re: The hippies have token over

      hippies never grow up!

      I know this cuz I are one.

    2. StatsBoy

      Re: The hippies have token over

      They have. They became what they hated.

      Just look at what they did to free speech on US college campuses when they became the administration. Or how you can lose your financial aid if you get busted for drinking in college and are under age.

  8. RegGuy1 Silver badge

    Make America Great Again

    ... man

    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

      Re: Make America Great Again

      Make America Grate Again (there, fixed it for you).

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