Norfolk CA to stop prosecuting misdemeanor marijuana possession cases

FILE - This Sept. 11, 2018, file photo, shows a marijuana plant at in the coastal mountain range of San Luis Obispo, Calif. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

NORFOLK, Va. (WSET) -- Norfolk's Commonwealth's Attorney has announced in a letter that he will no longer prosecute cases of misdemeanor marijuana possession.

Commonwealth's Attorney Greg Underwood published a letter on January 3 that his office will dismiss or withdraw any other case that includes 'marijuana possession that fall under their scope.'

Underwood also provided an overview for how prosecutors in his office will proceed into the new year, which included bail in felony and misdemeanor cases and sentences in prostitution cases.

Virginia lawmakers announced that they will look at decriminalizing marijuana in the upcoming legislative session.

Democratic state Sen. Adam Ebbin has submitted a bill to decriminalize simple marijuana possession — defined as 1/2 ounce or less — and provide a maximum civil penalty of $50 for a first violation. The current law carries a jail sentence of up to 30 days and a maximum $500 fine for a first offense.

The General Assembly convenes Tuesday, January 9.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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