Mayor Bloomberg announced on February 14, 2013 that people arrested for possessing small amounts of marijuana in New York City will get a Desk Appearance Ticket (DAT) rather than spend the night in jail.  If someone is arrested for having “weed” in NYC and he or she passes a warrant check, that person in possession of marijuana in New York City will be eligible for a Desk Appearance Ticket.

This announcement took place in Bloomberg’s Final State of the City Address, in which he stated”

But we know that there’s more we can do to keep New Yorkers, particularly young men, from ending up with a criminal record. Commissioner Kelly and I support Governor Cuomo’s proposal to make possession of small amounts of marijuana a violation, rather than a misdemeanor and we’ll work to help him pass it this year. But we won’t wait for that to happen.

“Right now, those arrested for possessing small amounts of marijuana are often held in custody overnight. We’re changing that. Effective next month, anyone presenting an ID and clearing a warrant check will be released directly from the precinct with a desk appearance ticket to return to court. It’s consistent with the law, it’s the right thing to do and it will allow us to target police resources where they’re needed most.

Currently, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo is seeking to lower the penalties for carrying small amounts of pot.

A Desk Appearance Ticket is also known as a DAT.  When someone is arrested, they can be sent to Central Booking from the police station and then be held overnight to see a Judge at the Criminal Court or, the police can give them a DAT for possession of marijuana (in this example) and that will be an appointment slip of sorts informing the person of the charge and the date that they are supposed to appear at the courthouse.

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