The Daily Chronicle from Centralia, Washington on December 5, 1974 · Page 8
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The Daily Chronicle from Centralia, Washington · Page 8

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Centralia, Washington
Issue Date:
Thursday, December 5, 1974
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Page 8
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The Daily Chronicle, 98531, Thursday. December 5,1974 Civil fines studied Marijuana penalties may be eased WASHINGTON (AP) - The Justice Department is studying whether to recommend stiff civil fines ralhi-r than criminal penalties for marijuana users. John R. Bartels Jr., head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, disclosed in an interview that the project was launched about three months ago. It was begun after officials became alarmed at a startling increase in the number of persons arrested for possessing small amounts of the drug, he said. Bartels said that Deputy Atty. Gen. Laurence Silberman directed the policy planning offices of the department and DEA to undertake the study. DEA is a Justice Department agency. The goal is to determine whether there's a way to end the threat of jail sentences and criminal records for thousands of young people while maintaining a strong legal deterrent to marijuana use, Bartels said. He emphasized, however, that he strongly opposes legalizing marijuana use and that he believes the drug is a serious health hazard. The department review comes amid other indications that the Ford administration is leaning toward softer punishment for users. Dr. Robert L. DuPont, head of the White House Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention, last month urged an end to criminal penalties. The U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, Earl J. Silbert, attempted to stop prosecuting those arrested for possessing less than one gram of marijuana, but rescinded the decision after Atty. Gen. William B. Saxbe disapproved. Bartels said, however, he does not expect a substantive change in administration policy although "there may be a slight change in emphasis." OPEN FRIDAY NIGHT 'TIL 10 P.M. He said the department review was . discussed routinely with DuPont but that the White House has not been involved in any other way. Department officials are concerned that the number of persons arrested for possessing marijuana for personal use has jumped from 18,000 in 1965 to about 400,000 last year, Bartels said. Bartels said the major approach under review is a civil penalty such as the year-old Oregon law which sets a maximum $100 fine for possessing less than an ounce of marijuana. Police issue citations similar to traffic tickets and violators do not acquire a criminal record because of the arrest. Federal law currently makes marijuana possession a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison. But most marijuana arrests come under state laws which vary in severity. Package bomb explodes PITTSBURGH, Pa. (AP) - A package bomb exploded while being examined at a United Parcel Service center here early today, killing one man and injuring eight others, police said. Police Lt. Ralph Pampena said a UPS worker had removed a package wrapped in brown paper from a line to inspect it because the ZIP code didn'l match the address. He said other workers reported seeing wires sticking out of the package, and that it exploded when the worker started to unwrap it. Police identified the victim as John Mctz, age unavailable, of nearby Bellevue Other workers reportedly told police they understood a bomb threat had been phoned to the UPS office, which handles western Pennsylvania deliveries. Dozens of policemen sealed off the site shortly after the 2:55 a.m. explosion. Doctor succumbs SEATTLE (AP) - Dr. Austin V. Deibert, 70. Everett, who worked for the U.S. Public Health Service most of his life, died Wednesday at the Public Health Service Hospital in Seattle. Local hospitals said six men were in satisfactory condition and two others w ere released after treatment. One man working in the blast area said: "I heard it and saw it. I saw a big ... aballof flame." According to another worker: "I saw a big blast and it knocked me against the truck. I came over to the other side and there were bodies laying all over the middle of the floor." A representative of Allegheny General Hospital said four men had been admitted, and all were in satisfactory- condition w ith "general lacerations and contusions." At St. Johns Hospital two men, Dale McGinley, 23, and Robert Bahl, 26, both of Pittsburgh, were reported in satisfactory condition. Two other men were released after treatment for minor injuries. . CHEHALIS LIONS Christmas Trees Safeway Parking lot Reg. Store Hours Cheholis OPEN SUNDAY 10A.M. TO 7P.M. Bring the "Kiddies" to visit Santa, Saturday Sunday. 1-5 P.M. Instant Polaroid Pictures Available for only $1.19 plus Tax. tanv ' Early American KEROSENE LAMP · Complete with wick and burner }· Available In Clear, Blue, · Ruby and Sunset Gold. 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