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Puna residents sue over enforcement of pot laws


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HILO » Eight Puna residents are suing Hawaii County officials, alleging police, prosecutors and other county officials have failed to abide by a voter initiative making adult personal use of marijuana the "lowest law enforcement priority."

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported the plaintiffs are seeking $5 million in punitive damages. The lawsuit asks police and prosecutors to stop investigating and prosecuting people in ways that are inconsistent with the Hawaii County code.

The suit names Mayor Billy Kenoi, Police Chief Harry Kubojiri, retiring Prosecutor Jay Kimura, and Deputy Prosecutors Charlene Iboshi and Mitch Roth. All current County Council members and all former members on the panel when the voter initiative was passed into law in 2008 are also named.

The suit was filed in Hilo Circuit Court last Thursday.

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