Colorado revisits marijuana DUI standard
Category: News | Posted on Mon, February, 27th 2012 by THCFinder
DENVER (AP) -- Driving while high is illegal in Colorado, but state lawmakers are again entering a hazy debate over how to measure whether medical marijuana patients are impaired behind the wheel.
A bill up for a Senate hearing Monday would say that drivers would be considered impaired if they test positive for 5 nanograms or more of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Problem is that there's little agreement over whether the amount is a fair gauge of whether a driver is impaired.
Current Colorado law says drivers can't be impaired by drugs but does not set a THC limit. Pot activists say impairment and THC levels aren't directly related.
Marijuana activists called the 5-nanogram limit ``unfair'' because they say patients who use marijuana regularly see a gradual build-up of THC levels, even when sober.
The 5-nanogram limit ``is not supported by the science,'' argued Michael Elliott of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group, which opposes the bill.
Marijuana activists favor instead an education effort reminding patients they cannot legally drive high.
Last year, a similar DUI standard cleared the House but was defeated in the Senate amid concerns from both parties about the lack of agreement on an acceptable blood-level standard. A nonpartisan study committee that looked at the question during the summer and fall could not agree on what the standard should be.
The Republican sponsor of this year's bill says law enforcement needs a standard to measure impairment.
``It's time we had a clear standard,'' said Sen. Steve King, R-Grand Junction.
Why Synthetic Marijuana Is More Dangerous Than the Real Thing
Category: News | Posted on Fri, February, 24th 2012 by THCFinder
Synthetic marijuana, or "fake" pot, is nothing like the real thing. It's legal, and easily accessible to kids.
It's also a bigger threat to kids' health.
"Marijuana has been used for medicinal and recreational purposes for hundreds of years," said Dr. Jeff Lapoint, a senior toxicology fellow at New York University, Bellevue Hospital. "It's been abused, but no one really gets sick."
"Kids need to know that this substance is more dangerous," Lapoint said.
Popularly called K2, or Spice, synthetic marijuana is a chemical similar to cannabis that gives a marijuana-like high.
But there have been an increasing number of cases of people experiencing seizures, heart palpitations, fever, dehydration and some psychotic episodes after using the drug.
A more potent version of marijuana
Since 2004, K2 has been sold and packaged as incense or potpourri, in the guise of a mixture of herbs and spices. It sells for about $30 to $40 per 3-gram bag, comparable to the cost of marijuana.
Drugmakers can make hundreds of versions of the chemical compound, and it's easy to manufacture.
Although the Drug Enforcement Administration has taken steps to ban five chemicals sometimes found in K2, versions of the compound have multiplied, and increased in use over the past few years.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 11 percent of nearly 15,000 high school seniors surveyed reported using K2 in 2011.
That year, poison control centers reported handling nearly 7,000 calls about K2, nearly double the calls received in 2010.
One recent study suggests that K2 could increase the risk of psychosis, even among people with no history of a psychiatric disorder.
"K2 is a more potent substance than natural marijuana by its actions on the brain," said Dr. Ashwin Reddy, an author of that study and a psychiatrist at the Boston University School of Medicine. "It can cause an increased risk of paranoia, hearing voices, disorganized behavior and panic symptoms."
"Depending on the person, psychotic symptoms can last a few days to a few months," Reddy said.
Not intended for human use
K2 is sometimes reported as having originated in Europe, but was actually developed by John W. Huffman, a chemist at Clemson University in South Carolina.
Initially created as a medical treatment, the substance works on the brain the sameway as marijuana's active ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC.
THC is the substance in marijuana that produces the "high" feeling of intoxication that pot smokers crave.
"This drug was never intended for people to use, just for use in a lab," Lapoint said.
But also disturbing is the unregulated amount of chemicals added in each package.
"You don't know how much of which chemical they put in each package so you don't know what you're getting and how your body will handle it," he said.
Pass it on: Synthetic pot is a more potent — and dangerous — form of marijuana.
Legal group goes to bat for eighth-grader suspended for using oregano in pot prank
Category: News | Posted on Wed, February, 22nd 2012 by THCFinder
Taking the punishment too far for a kids little prank.
An eighth-grader suspended after pranking a classmate with a bag of oregano following a lecture on the dangers of marijuana has a civil liberties group in his corner, but officials at his North Carolina school aren't backing down.
The boy was booted from his school for 55 days for the stunt at Cuthbertson Middle School in Waxhaw, N.C. School officials cite the district's policy manual, which says a student can get a 10-day suspension for "possessing illegal or counterfeit drugs and "misuse of chemical/material (organic or otherwise) that causes or is purported to cause a hallucinogenic/mind altering effect." A longer suspension can be imposed if officials determine a student's conduct "demonstrates a willful violation" of school policies.
"It was just a joke," the mother of the boy, who is not being identified because of his age, told FoxNews.com in an exclusive interview. "He's embarrassed that it's turned into such a big issue. He's actually said he doesn't know why he did it. But he didn't have an illegal substance to begin with."
Luan Ingram, a spokeswoman for Union County Public Schools, confirmed to FoxNews.com that the matter was handled according to its student discipline policy, but declined additional comment.
In a letter to Union County Public Schools officials, the Virginia-based Rutherford Institute called the suspension a "gross overreaction" to a childish prank and said it may be a violation of the boy's constitutional rights.
"We want the record cleaned up so this doesn't track him for the rest of his life," John Whitehead, president of the Rutherford Institute, told FoxNews.com.
Immediately after the incident last month, in which the boy passed the bag of seasoning to a pal a day after their health class discussed marijuana, the boy received a 10-day suspension. On Feb. 1, school officials notified the boy's family that he had been recommended for another 45 days of suspension. Their appeal of the additional term was denied this week, and the boy is attending a school for at-risk students until he is eligible to return to Cuthbertson on March 29.
Domino's manager sold marijuana in pizza boxes
Category: News | Posted on Tue, February, 21st 2012 by THCFinder
Straight out of WEEDs , this guy was hiding his stash in pizza boxes, kinda reminds me of the episode on Weeds where they are selling weed at their sandwhich shop!
HOLLY SPRING, NC (WTVD) -- A manager at a Domino's Pizza restaurant in Holly Springs is accused of selling drugs out of the store.
According to search warrants obtained by ABC11, 29-year-old Benjamin Crook hid marijuana in empty pizza boxes when he sold it to an informant.
Crook was charged with possession with intent to distribute, selling marijuana, delivering marijuana, and maintaining a dwelling to keep/sell a controlled substance.
In the search warrants, an investigator with the Holly Springs Police Department says he got information from a confidential informant that Crook was involved in illegal drug activity at a home on Gooseberry Drive. The informant also said Crook was a general manager at a Domino's Pizza on Crossway Lane.
The informant allegedly purchased marijuana from Crook once in January and two times in early February. The second two times, the drugs were placed in a plastic bag hidden inside empty pizza boxes and sold for cash at the restaurant.
Investigators also went through the trash at the home on Gooseberry Drive and found evidence of drug activity.
The search warrants state that investigators seized 21.8 grams of marijuana from a locker at the restaurant and another 18 grams in the safe.
Private plane carrying marijuana strays into Obama's no-fly zone
Category: News | Posted on Tue, February, 21st 2012 by THCFinder
A small private plane carrying a load of marijuana strayed into President Obama's no-fly zone over Los Angeles on Thursday.
The plane was forced to land at Long Beach Airport, after being intercepted by U.S. Air Force jet fighters, authorities said.
The four-seat Cessna entered the restricted airspace about 11 a.m. as the president was flying from Orange County to Los Angeles aboard Marine One, a military helicopter provided for his use.
Federal officials said the aircraft was never close enough to endanger Obama.
Air traffic controllers tried repeatedly to contact the single-engine Cessna, authorities said, but the pilot did not respond.
The plane was quickly intercepted by two F-16 fighters from March Air Reserve Base in Riverside County, the report said.
After the Cessna touched down, federal agents and Long Beach police detained the pilot for questioning and found what law enforcement officials described as a large amount of marijuana on board the aircraft.
The pilot was taken into custody by Long Beach police, but his identity and other details were not released because of the continuing drug investigation.
Aircraft are typically prohibited from flying within 10 miles of any plane or helicopter carrying the president.
Stupid teen looking to steal pot steals a tomato plant
Category: News | Posted on Mon, February, 20th 2012 by THCFinder
Call it a case of mistaken plant identity.
A 15-year-old boy climbed into Angela Cartwright's kitchen window thinking to make off with a marijuana plant, but instead the young thief was actually stealing a potted tomato plant, a sheriff's arrest report shows.
As he was running from Cartwright's house on Carmen Avenue near Holly Hill on Feb. 10 just after 7 a.m., the teen even yelled at Cartwright, "See, I have one of your pot plants!" the arrest report states.
Cartwright had arrived at her residence that morning after leaving her 6-year-old son off at the school bus stop. When she walked into her home she saw a teenager whose torso was inside her kitchen window and the other half of his body was hanging outside, the report shows.
When Cartwright yelled, "Hey!" the suspect jumped back and bolted, the potted tomato plant in hand.
"I chased him and I yelled out, "You stupid little brat, it's a tomato plant!" Cartwright said Thursday.
The teen gave Cartwright the slip, but Wednesday morning as Cartwright and a friend walked Cartwright's son to the bus stop, they spotted the teenager a second time, the report shows.
The boy was wearing the same clothes Cartwright had seen on him five days earlier, she said.
"I said to my friend, 'That's him,' " Cartwright said. "It looked like he was going to hide from me, but then he stayed there."
According to the report and Cartwright, the boy, who The Daytona Beach News-Journal is not identifying because of his age, admitted to stealing the tomato plant, valued at under $5.
"He seemed like a nice kid," Cartwright said. "It almost seemed as if he wanted to get caught."
While Cartwright, her friend and the teen waited for a deputy to arrive at the bus stop, the 35-year-old mother took the opportunity to give a lecture.
"I gave him the 'mother lecture,' " Cartwright said. "He listened and I told him he should be in school."
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