BROOKLYN - A study, funded by the Marijuana Policy Project and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, says the NYPD may be targeting poor black and Hispanic communities when enforcing marijuana smoking laws.

Authors of the study say arrests for Marijuana in Public View (MPV) has increased in the city and Brooklyn since the early 1990's when these arrests generally occurred in Manhattan. The authors say police are now intentionally targeting poorer communities.

The NYPD refutes this saying the study ignored the fact that these are high-crime areas. The NYPD says police are following quality of life policing, in which they seek to maintain order and reduce activities that offend the general public.

Authors of the study suggest the NYPD have less stringent consequences for smoking marijuana such as fines.

Related Information:Harm Reduction Journal