The co-founder of D.C. Marijuana Justice, Adam Eidinger, had possession charges that were levied against him following his arrest during an Apr. 20 demonstration in Washington, D.C. dropped after the Drug Enforcement Agency determined that the 78 joints found in his possession were less than the 2 ounces allowed under the District’s adult-use laws, the Washington Post reports.
Eidinger was one of eight protesters arrested while handing out joints to congressional staffers as part of the demonstration. He had spent one night in jail and made multiple court appearances related to the case.
“To me, this means that they don’t understand that people have a right to give cannabis away in the District and they don’t have a very good legal argument to prosecute them,” Eidinger said in the report.
Eva Malecki, a spokesperson for Capitol Police, said that federal law had applied to the case; however Bill Miller, spokesperson for the U.S. attorney’s office, said that local charges were pursued but did not comment on why they were applied instead of the federal charges. Under federal law, it is illegal to possess any amount of cannabis.
If convicted of the charges, Eidinger could have been sentenced to six months in prison.
Another protester, Jessica Laycock, also had her possession charges dropped but is seeking to have the cannabis and paraphernalia returned. Capitol police have said they will not return the property because cannabis is a controlled substance under federal law.
Eidinger and other protesters still face charges from an Apr. 24 rally for allegedly consuming cannabis on federal grounds.