He emphasized that the law provides for automatic expungement of arrests for marijuana possession under 30 grams, and that he will pardon those with convictions for possession up to 30 grams.
Individuals and prosecutors may go to court to seek expungement of cases involving up to 500 grams.
“Today we are giving hundreds of thousands of people the chance at a better life,” Pritzker said.
The governor noted that no one with a violent crime conviction will be eligible for expungement or pardon.
* Excellent story from Hannah Meisel…
Expungements and pardons will available under the new law for approximately 700,000 arrest and conviction records belonging to approximately 315,000 people. […]
In the next 180 days, the state police will identify all eligible convictions based on criminal history records within the state police’s database and provide the convictions to the Prisoner Review Board, which will review the records for eligibility to ensure that the convictions in the dataset are indeed eligible for pardon and not associated with a violent crime.
After that, the board will notify local state’s attorneys of felony convictions being considered for clemency, and those county prosecutors will get 60 days to file a written objection to a pardon based on evidence that the conviction record is ineligible for clemency. The board will then provide the group of convictions eligible for clemency to the governor, who will then be able to pardon them all at once.
From there, Attorney General Kwame Raoul will file petitions with each individual circuit court around the state to expunge the records of those who were pardoned.
“We wrote in the law an expedited process,” [Deputy Gov. Christian Mitchell] said of the Prison Review Board’s role in expungement. “I’m circumspect to give you a date now because I just don’t know. This is a new thing, it’s a rather large-scale thing. It’s going to take time, but it’s going to take much less time than it was otherwise.”
The Prison Review Board, a 15-member board responsible for hearing the pleas fromr incarcerated people to get out of prison earlier than their sentence dictates either on parole or for good behavior, usually takes time with their decisions. Mitchell compared that intensive fact-finding mission with the board’s responsibility in marijuana clemency, and said board’s role here will take much less time.