Minnesota expunges 58,000 misdemeanor cannabis records
The process will be repeated in 2025 to discover and expunge more records after Minnesota decriminalized the drug.

Minnesota has expunged almost 58,000 misdemeanor marijuana convictions from the state Criminal History System (CHS), according to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

The BCA says a total of 57,780 records have been expunged almost three months ahead of schedule, coming after the Adult-Use Cannabis Act became law in August.

As well as legalizing personal possession of marijuana for adults 21 and over, the law also green-lit the automatic expungement of certain marijuana convictions for thousands of Minnesotans.

Of the 58,000 cases surveyed so far, the Minnesota Judicial System did determine that 213 records “should not be expunged.” No further explanation was provided on those specific cases.

“We are pleased to be able to deliver on this legislative priority,” BCA Superintendent Drew Evans said.

“Minnesotans will see changes to their records immediately and as additional expungements are made in the months and years ahead.”

As well as misdemeanor offenses being expunged, most felony-level, marijuana-related records qualify for review by the independent Cannabis Expungement Board, which will consider whether resentencing or expungement are appropriate under the new law.

Of the 58,000 cases surveyed so far, the Minnesota Judicial System did determine that 213 records “should not be expunged.” No further explanation was provided on those specific cases.

“We are pleased to be able to deliver on this legislative priority,” BCA Superintendent Drew Evans said.

“Minnesotans will see changes to their records immediately and as additional expungements are made in the months and years ahead.”

As well as misdemeanor offenses being expunged, most felony-level, marijuana-related records qualify for review by the independent Cannabis Expungement Board, which will consider whether resentencing or expungement are appropriate under the new law.

“It is very encouraging to see that misdemeanor cannabis criminal records are moving toward expungement now. These actions together will have a lasting and significant equity impact on communities throughout the state of Minnesota.”

Residents can request copies of their own records held in the BCA system at any time, including after records are expunged. Other access to expunged records in the CHS requires a court order.

Further expungements will follow via the Clean Slate Act, which was passed in 2023. The law requires expungement for certain non-violent offenders. The law also remove the requirement that expungements be reviewed and approved by prosecutors and have to go through a court process.

The BCA said the Clean Slate Act goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2025.

Source: Bring Me The News