Politics Aside, RI Needs to Follow Laws (Even on Weed)


RIFuture’s Bob Plain is reporting that a judge has dismissed the marijuana possession charge against him and, indeed, that the local police have returned the drugs that they confiscated.  (Which is peculiar, because I never got back the Super Soaker that police took from my car in the parking lot before a rock concert at Jones Beach on Long Island twenty years ago.)

I’ve written that I disagree with the “obstacle course of compliance” that tripped Bob up, so I’d hate to appear to be flipping sides now that the incident is history, but there is a legal question in play, and Bob says the judge didn’t state his reasoning.  The medical marijuana statute contains two relevant sections.

One says that use of pot is assumed to be medical if the user is “in possession of a registry identification card.” The other says that other people aren’t breaking the law if they’re in “constructive possession… or any other offense” for being in the presence of somebody using marijuana medically or for helping somebody to do so.

It’s a bit of a leap from that to the argument that simply knowing somebody with a registry ID card who is willing to claim ownership allows anybody in Rhode Island to carry otherwise illegal drugs around.