As night descended on Lummus Park this past Sunday, the smell of pot along the sidewalk was thicker than the salty ocean air. Perched on a coquina rock barrier, 20-year-old Bianca Plummer rolled a blunt with a few thimblefuls of pot.
But before the young woman dressed in shorts and a black swimsuit could light up, five cops on bikes surrounded her. Within minutes, she was handcuffed.
Miami Beach Police arrested 40 people, many of them African-American like Plummer, this past weekend for misdemeanor drug charges — primarily for small amounts of marijuana. There were a total of 130 arrests for all crimes. That number far exceeded the 27 people whom City of Miami Police took into custody in three days during Ultra 2018. (The city didn’t say how many of the Ultra arrests were related to small amounts of pot.)
In addition, MBPD arrested only 14 people for pot during Miami Music Week this year.
“Minorities are the favorite target when it comes to drug enforcement,” says Karen Goldstein, the deputy director of Florida’s National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). “That’s no question.” [Read more at Miami New Times]