The legalization of cannabis in more than half the US states has brought about many positive changes. Whether be it bringing relief to patients with debilitating conditions or generating revenue and creating jobs, cannabis has rather proven to be a blessing for the society as a whole.
However, the drug is still federally illegal and can get you in all sorts of unfathomable troubles, even if you have all the valid medical cards and permissions to grow or consume cannabis. Thus, one should tread with caution and be extra vigilant when it comes to marijuana, both in terms of legality and health aspects.
Here are three instances where cannabis proved to be ‘dangerous’ for the ones around:
1) The Smell Incident
4 University of Lynchburg Football players were heading over to their campus after a tiring workout session on one fine morning of March 2019. However, owing to a broken tail-light, their vehicle was pulled over by police officers.
In the footage of the incident, the officer was seen taking out his gun and handcuffing all the 4 students who happened to be Black. When confronted for his actions, the officer said that when he was approaching the car, he smelled cannabis, which prompted him to take out his gun. The officer added that the Supreme Court says, “guns and drugs go together.”
A thorough search of the car neither resulted in guns nor any cannabis. As a result, a ticket for only a broken tail-light was issued. This piece of news created quite a ‘noise’ in Virginia.
2) Prescribed medical marijuana lands a person in jail
Patrick “BlackFire” Beadle, a Jamaica-born Oregon musician, had a valid Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) card for chronic pain problems. Thus, him being in possession of a few pounds of cannabis shouldn’t be much of an issue in his state.
However, in March 2017, while driving through Mississippi, he was taken into custody at a traffic stop, where 2.89 pounds of cannabis was confiscated from him. This was, of course, the legal medical marijuana that he had purchased in Oregon. Inspite of his OMMP cardholder status and zero evidence of drug trafficking, Beadle was looking at 40 years in prison.
A year later, he was sentenced to 8 years without parole for drug trafficking. However, in February 2019, he was granted the permission to enter a guilty plea to simple possession, which came with a 12-year sentence, but offered potential parole after 3 years.
3) The bulldozer incident
Greg Longenecker, a 51-year-old short-order chef was fond of gardening. However, one illicit activity cost him his life. In July 2018, Longenecker, along with his friend David Light, was checking on his illegal 10-plant grow on some state lands, around 75 miles outside Philadelphia. All of a sudden, the authorities bumped onto the scene. Light Surrendered while Longenecker chose to flee into the dense underbrush.
As a result, the authorities ordered a bulldozer to clear a path into the brush where Longenecker had fled. What happened next wasn’t something that one could expect.
Longenecker was crushed under the bulldozer as he either got injured while running or was stuck in the dense bush.
Whatever be the reason, the bottom line was that a family — which later filed a lawsuit questioning the police’s theory that Longenecker was high on meth and dove under the bulldozer — had lost its member to just 10 illegal cannabis plants.
Is this the price of a soul?