MARION, IL— The Williamson County states attorney is reviewing the process of expunging marijuana records.
Recreational marijuana becomes legal, in Illinois, on Jan. 1. According to the law, your arrest record will be expunged if you have prior charges where you were found possessing 30 grams or less of marijuana.
Dan Fox does not support legalized recreational marijuana but since it's happening he supports the state making things right with the people who possessed it before it was legal.
"I rather lock up a child molester, rapist or a bank robber than some guy who had marijuana in his car back in 1989," Fox said. "I think it 's a great place to start. I kind of think the people who were arrested two years ago for personal used I don't think we should ruin their lives. We can certainly rectify that wrong by at least expunging their records and setting them free,"
The Williamson County States Attorney Brandon Zanotti says it's a complex process.
"The real burden here is going to be on the state police and the prisoner review board," Zanotti said.
Zanotti explained that anyone charged with 30 grams or less, not associated with another crime, and the person wasn't convicted, it's an automatic expungement.
Zanotti also says if the person was convicted it will go through another process including the Prisoner Review Board and they will review all facts before making a decision.
Fox says this could be life-changing for minorities.
"You could see very quickly you have a lot of African American young men locked up for things I might not have been locked up for at 18 years old," Fox said. "I think what the state police in Illinois and the state's attorney is doing is a smart move. Get in front of this, let's start doing this now. It's going to take time to look up all of the names."
State police will REVIEW thousands of records A 2025 deadline.
This applies to criminal charges and convictions.
Zanotti also mentioned if you were found with greater than 30 grams or the possession was associated with another crime then you could file a petition to expunge the record in court.