Do Wilmington Police Charge Higher Marijuana Fines?
A reader asks about the town's marijuana fines in our latest You Ask... Patch Answers.
If you're found with marijuana on you in Massachusetts, you're facing a stiff fine. But one reader wants to know. Is Wilmington's fine for marijuana possession higher than the state's?
"Could you find out why Wilmington is charging a $300 fine for pot when the state fine is $100?," wrote one reader. "I just found out about this and dont understand how they are doing this legally."
For the answer we turned to Wilmington Police Chief Michael Begonis, who said there is a key difference in the fines involving marijuana.
Begonis pointed to Section 12A, which deals with public consumption of marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinol, a new section that was approved on May 2, 2009.
"The difference is that the $300 dollar fine is for the public consumption of marijuana," said Begonis. "The other is for simple possession of less than an ounce."
So in other words, smoking marijuana in public will yield to a higher fine that simply possessing it, but Wilmington's fines are in line with those at the state level.
Do you have a question for our next You Ask... Patch Answers? E-mail Local Editor Matt Schooley and we'll see what we can find out.