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Maryjane's Denver Gets Raided; Patrons Cuffed

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 15th 2014 by THCFinder
police-raid-maryjanes-denver-club
Not even those in Colorado are safe from prosecution when they indulge in our favorite plant. While the law in CO says that cannabis cannot be consumed in public view, the private clubs assumed that they were safe until Maryjane's in Denver was raided. Those present at the private club were cuffed and charged with smoking in public, being issued fines even though they thought that they were in compliance with the law. The club requires a membership, even for one night of smoking in the establishment, so no one really expected detectives to show up and start cuffing people.
 
Marijuana is not sold inside Maryjane's and neither is food or drink. Those that pay for a membership bring their own medicine and use the smoking tools provided by the club. But cops still raided the building in order to "investigate illegal activity" which meant the consumption of marijuana. The police issued citations to people in the club for ingesting the plant. The citations contained fines of $135. The police apparently had been in the club before, posing as members and staking the place out. A member that was present at the club at the time recognized them from previous nights.
 
The attorney for those involved with the raid, Rob Corry, said that the club never received an official warning to stop consuming marijuana on the premises, something that the police department claimed to be doing to businesses that tried to let their patrons smoke on site. Corry compared the club's activities to those of the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, which hosted a series of events called Classically Cannabis. The events were sponsored by cannabis companies and the people attending were also allowed to bring their own cannabis, as long as the events were held at private galleries and were invitation only. The symphony eventually did change the policy after allegedly being warned about the "public" consumption of cannabis.
 
Cannabis is now a legal substance in the state of Colorado. Considering that alcohol has a place to be ingested and enjoyed, it should absolutely be the same for cannabis. Especially since these establishments are private and either cost money or require an invitation, the police should leave stoners alone. As long as the clubs have proper ventilation and follow the rules, like no giving away marijuana, there should be no reason for such raids. The police should spend their time arresting real criminals, not people who are just trying to smoke with like minded peers.

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Former Cops Get Busted Stealing Weed Candy

Category: News | Posted on Mon, July, 14th 2014 by THCFinder
former-cops-busted-stealing-weed-candy
Yes you did read the caption right. Two former Goodyear, Arizona cops were arrested recently after stealing over 20 pounds of cannabis infused chocolate from a package shipped from California that arrived at OnTrac, the shipping company that the two men were now employed by as security. The box arrived marked as cannabis chocolate from the west coast state, weighing in at a whopping 50 pounds total. David Carpenter and Eric Scott Whittington were both arrested and are awaiting their court dates for stealing the medicated candy.
 
When the box of chocolate arrived at the company, the employees set it aside to be confiscated by the police. Even though Arizona allows the sale of medical cannabis, they are still one of the strictest in regards to cannabis law. Medicated candy is not legal under the law, nor is any other edible. So even though the candies arrived, they would've never made it to their end destination... But they certainly weren't supposed to end up in the hands of these two former police officers. Sgt. Steve Martos was interviewed about the arrest and he was unsure of the reason the two men were no longer part of the police force.
 
"Prior to them being able to call the police, they noticed that two of their security offivers has walked in to the room containing the box with two backpacks and it appears that they had left the room with something in their backpacks," said Sgt. Martos. When the employees of OnTrac inspected the box after the two men had left, they noticed that the box was considerably lighter and they called the police. When officers arrived, they obtained warrants to search the houses of the two men in question. The search turned up the candy, as well as handguns and ammo. Cellphones were also recovered that contained texts from the two men, planning to steal the stoney candy.
 
The two former police officers are facing charges of theft and possession of illegal narcotic drugs for sale. It is estimated that the candy stolen was worth around $3,000 and that the men were planning on selling the candy and making a bit of a profit. The rest of the candy was confiscated by the police.

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Brooklyn To Stop Prosecuting Possession Of Small Amounts Of Marijuana

Category: News | Posted on Thu, July, 10th 2014 by THCFinder
brooklyn-to-stop-prosecuting-small-amounts-of-cannabisBrooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson announced the implementation of his policy to end the prosecution of most low-level marijuana possession cases. With this bold and smart initiative, DA Thompson is using his discretionary authority as the top law enforcement officer in Brooklyn to refocus limited law enforcement resources on serious public safety issues, address and reduce unwarranted racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and ensure that Brooklyn residents are no longer saddled with lifelong arrest records for simple possession of marijuana. In a statement released by DA Thompson, he noted that he shares responsibility with NYPD to protect public safety, but he has an additional duty “to reform and improve our criminal justice system in Brooklyn.”
 
Advocates applaud Thompson’s efforts to address a broken law that has led to hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers being arrested for possessing small amounts of marijuana. Over the last fifteen years, over 600,000 people have been arrested for marijuana possession in New York City – the majority of whom are young men of color, even though young white men use marijuana at higher rates. Last year, there were nearly 30,000 such arrests in New York City alone. Based on first-quarter data obtained from the state Division of Criminal Justice Services, NYPD is now on track to make nearly as many marijuana possession arrests in 2014 as it did in 2013, with similarly shocking racial disparities.
 
“We commend DA Thompson for this powerful step toward  restoring fairness and equity in the criminal justice system,” said Gabriel Sayegh, NY State Director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “In New York, our marijuana policies are clearly broken. Albany has yet to act, which means it’s up to municipal leaders to take action on this issue. Thompson’s smart policy will serve the cause of justice and equity in Brooklyn, and we hope district attorneys across the City and the country – as well as Mayor de Blasio and leaders in Albany – are inspired to take similar action. It’s time to end this failed war on drugs and restore sanity, equity and justice to our drug policies.”
 

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Smell of unburnt marijuana cannot justify search of car

Category: News | Posted on Thu, July, 10th 2014 by THCFinder
smell-of-cannabis-does-not-warrant-a-car-search
The Supreme Judicial Court Wednesday said that because voters decriminalized small amounts of marijuana in 2008, police officers in Massachusetts can no longer rely on the odor of unburnt marijuana to justify searching a person’s car.
 
In two unanimous rulings, the state’s highest court said they had already decided in 2011 that the odor of smoked marijuana by itself did not provide police with probable cause to stop people on the street or search the vehicles people are riding in.
 
The court said in its 2011 ruling that it would be legally inconsistent to allow police to make warrantless searches after they smell burning marijuana when citizens had decided through a statewide referendum question that law enforcement should “focus their attention elsewhere.’’
 
The court said Wednesday it was now extending the same reasoning to cases where the owner has not yet started smoking it. Marijuana, the court acknowledged, generates a pungent aroma, but an odor by itself does not allow police to determine whether a person has more than an ounce with them. Possession of an ounce or less of marijuana is not a crime.
 
“The 2008 initiative decriminalized possession of one ounce or less of marijuana under State law, and accordingly removed police authority to arrest individuals for civil violations,’’ Justice Barbara Lenk wrote for the unanimous court.
 
“We have held that the odor of burnt marijuana alone cannot support probable cause to search a vehicle without a warrant ... [now] we hold that such odor [of unburnt marijuana], standing alone, does not provide probable cause to search an automobile.’’
 
The court established the new legal standard in the case of Matthew W. Overmyer, who was arrested in Pittsfield by police investigating a car crash. Responding officers noticed what the SJC called “a very strong odor of unburnt marijuana.’’
 
Police found one bag of marijuana in the glovebox of Overmyer’s car, and a backpack holding even more, leading police to charge him with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute.
 
The court said police could not use their noses alone to arrest Overmyer, but might have had another legally approved basis for searching his car. They ordered the case back to the district court for more proceedings.
 

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First day of legal marijuana sales in Washington state

Category: News | Posted on Wed, July, 9th 2014 by THCFinder
legal-marijuana-salesSEATTLE (AP) — Surrounded by thousands of packages of marijuana, Seattle's top prosecutor sought some advice: Which one should he buy?
 
A new day, indeed.
 
Twenty months after voters legalized recreational cannabis for adults over 21, Washington state's first few licensed pot shops opened for business Tuesday, catering to hundreds of customers who lined up outside, thrilled to be part of the historic moment.
 
The pot being sold at four stores in Seattle, Bellingham, Prosser and Spokane was regulated, tested for impurities, heavily taxed and in short supply — such short supply that several other shops couldn't open because they had nothing to sell.
 
Pete Holmes, Seattle's elected city attorney and a main backer of the state's recreational marijuana law, said he wanted to be one of the first customers to demonstrate there are alternatives to the nation's failed drug war.
 
"This is a tectonic shift in public policy," he said. "You have to honor it. This is real. This is legal. This is a wonderful place to purchase marijuana where it's out of the shadows."
 
Dressed in a pinstripe suit, Holmes stood inside Seattle's first and, for now, only licensed pot shop, Cannabis City, south of downtown. The shop was sweltering. He fanned himself with a state-produced pamphlet titled "Marijuana Use in Washington State: An Adult Consumer's Guide."
 
Unsure what to buy, he asked the owner of the company that grew it, Nine Point Growth Industries of Bremerton, who recommended OG's Pearl. The strain tested at 21.5 percent THC, marijuana's main psychoactive compound.
 
The shop's 26-year-old twin salesmen, Andrew and Adam Powers, explained its benefits to Holmes: mainly, that the taste is not too "skunky" to turn off the occasional user.
 
Holmes noted it had been quite some time since he smoked pot. He paraphrased a line from the "South Park" cartoon series: "Remember, children, there's a time and place for everything. That place is college."
 
He spent $80 on 4 grams, including $20.57 in taxes.
 
Washington is the second state to allow marijuana sales without a doctor's note. Voters in Colorado also legalized pot in 2012, and sales began there Jan. 1.
 

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Few Think the FDA Will Reclassify Marijuana

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 8th 2014 by THCFinder
fda-will-most-likely-not-reclassify-marijuana
Advocates on both sides of the debate over legalizing marijuana are skeptical that the Food and Drug Administration will recommend reclassifying marijuana out of the highest drug schedule and say little would change even if it did.
 
Douglas C. Throckmorton, deputy director for regulatory programs at the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, told lawmakers last month that the agency is analyzing whether marijuana should continue to be categorized as a Schedule I substance, spurred by citizen petitions received by the Drug Enforcement Administration. Under the Controlled Substances Act, drugs are classified into five schedules based on their potential for abuse and other criteria, with Schedule I considered to be the most dangerous.
 
But Dan Riffle, former director of federal policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, said it’s very difficult to obtain marijuana for research because the National Institute on Drug Abuse has a monopoly on the supply. He said he has no doubt the eight-factor analysis being performed by the FDA will yield the same result as those before it.
 
The agency conducted analyses at the DEA’s request in 2001 and 2006 and recommended that marijuana remain in Schedule I, according to Throckmorton’s testimony.
 
Kevin A. Sabet, cofounder of Project SAM, which opposes marijuana legalization, said the FDA is looking at the issue because a legalization advocate is forcing the issue. It’s “fantasyland” to think marijuana will be rescheduled, he said, citing the science on the issue and disputing that obtaining the drug for research is a problem.
 
Even if it was moved to Schedule II, Sabet added, it wouldn’t matter because the penalties are a separate matter.
 
Riffle agreed, calling the idea that marijuana should be rescheduled a “red herring.” Rescheduling wouldn’t do anything because it would still be illegal to possess the drug under federal law, he said.
 
At last month’s hearing, Throckmorton said he couldn’t say when he expects the FDA’s analysis to be complete. The agency makes a recommendation to the Department of Health and Human Services after consulting with NIDA, he noted, and then that recommendation gets sent to the DEA.
 

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