News Flash Home
The original item was published from 5/22/2023 4:53:17 PM to 7/20/2023 3:06:42 PM.

News Flash

Press Releases

Posted on: May 22, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Denton Police Department Information and Data Related to Marijuana Possession

Press Release Text with City of Denton Logo

DENTON, TX, May 22, 2023 – The Denton Police Department recently published the latest available information on all marijuana-related citations and arrests from Nov. 9, 2022, through May 2, 2023, on the department’s open data portal.

Previously, Denton PD released data that shows that Denton PD took the following actions in response to marijuana-related offenses from Nov. 9, 2022, to Feb. 17, 2023:

  • Issued 46 citations
  • Issued six marijuana-related citations in conjunction with arrests for other offenses
  • Made three arrests 

Of these 55 incidents, six issued citations and two arrests occurred prior to the Nov. 22 canvassing of the November municipal election results.

As the community continues to request information and data, the Police Department is committed to providing full information and context regarding marijuana enforcement. The chart below includes all marijuana-related citations issued and arrests made during the listed time period, across all demographics.

Under Police Chief Doug Shoemaker, marijuana policies have continued to be reviewed in order to align with the views and wants of residents/voters, as allowed under state law. Of note, Chief Shoemaker amended a prior departmental policy that stated officers shall arrest for up to 4 ounces of marijuana possession, instead giving officers the discretion not to arrest for that marijuana possession in the event no other serious or violent offenses were being committed. 

 In addition, detection of the odor of marijuana, often referred to as “the smell test,” is not a tool utilized alone to establish probable cause for arrest. The department’s marijuana enforcement policy is available online

Information relating to marijuana offenses will be updated monthly at

Police Chief Doug Shoemaker Statement
 “In the Nov. 9- Feb. 17 time frame, only three arrests were made for marijuana possession. Each investigation is treated individually and during these three, the individual arrested posed a threat to our Denton community or there were other factors at play. 

For the first arrest, the person was additionally charged with DWI, an offense that leads to the death of thousands of people in the U.S. each year. For the second arrest, officers were responding to a 911 call from a terrified young woman who reported her stalker was outside.  While officers were only able to charge him with marijuana possession on this date, he was later served a warrant for stalking, a third-degree felony. This warrant referenced the date of the marijuana possession arrest, in addition to other dates he had been stalking her, causing her to fear for her life. Finally, the third arrestee was also charged with possession of a controlled substance PG3, a felony, as she was in possession of multiple illicit substances. Again, these were the only three arrests in the time period being discussed. 

I believe this displays that the intent behind the women and men of the Denton Police Department, as  they are conducting these investigations, is not to crack down on petty marijuana use. At the end of the day, their goal, and mine, is to protect all members of our community.”

City Manager Sara Hensley Statement

“I have full faith and confidence that Chief Shoemaker has and will continue to ensure the Denton Police Department conducts its drug-related enforcement activities in compliance with the authority granted to peace officers to enforce the State’s drug laws, as well as the oath of office the Chief and every sworn member of the Denton Police Department took to uphold the laws of the State of Texas. The City of Denton will continue to deprioritize enforcement of low amounts of marijuana in accordance with both state law and the voices of the population we serve.”


Visit for more news and to stay updated.

Facebook Twitter Email