Charges Dropped Against D.C. Activist Handing Out Joints

shutterstock 400314235
shutterstock 400314235

Adam Eidinger no longer faces criminal charges for handing out joints to the public. 

April 20 is known for festive marijuana celebrations across the world. In Washington D.C., eight marijuana activists were arrested for handing out free joints on this year’s marijuana holiday.

Of the eight individuals arrested, only two were charged with a crime. This week that number was cut to one as Adam Eidinger was notified that he would not face prosecution by the U.S. attorney’s office.


Eidinger is known for his efforts in getting Initiative 71 passed. He drafted the ballot language and is seen as instrumental in getting voter support.

Eidinger was arrested on April 20, 2017, for possessing 78 joints. He spent a night in jail and has appeared in court multiple times.

Ultimately, there did not seem to be a legitimate case against Eidinger. Current D.C. law allows for individuals to possess up to two ounces of marijuana, less than what was inside of the joints. D.C. police only weigh the actual cannabis flower and not rolling paper.

The Drug Enforcement Agency has now agreed to drop the charges against Eidinger.

“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 according to the Washington Post.

Local jurisdiction in Washington D.C. is often a confusing situation as there almost alway seems to be a federal shadow cast over residents. Eidinger made sure to be standing on land that falls under the local D.C. police’s jurisdiction and did not possess more than the legal limit. Though Eidinger was careful, he was still arrested.

“Federal laws apply throughout the District of Columbia and the federal law was applied by the Capitol Police”, wrote Eva Malecki, a spokeswoman for the federal police agency said according to the Washington Post.

Eidinger’s attorney has claimed that his client may have been a target by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and his desire to oversee harsher punishment for marijuana consumers.