Multiple Toronto Dispensary Raids
TORONTO, Canada (CRN) – Police on Thursday raided 43 medical marijuana dispensaries in Toronto, seizing hundreds of pounds of cannabis and making 90 arrests. Toronto police chief Mark Saunders said the crackdown was on stores believed to be selling marijuana to recreational consumers. He also alleged that the shops were selling improperly labeled cannabis products that could be seen as a public safety risk. Protestors countered that Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has pledged to legalize recreational marijuana soon throughout the entire country. Medical marijuana is legal in Canada, but only sales by mail through providers licensed by Health Canada are legal. Storefronts like the ones raided Thursday are not legal.
EAST LOS ANGELES, California (CRN) – Presidential Candidate Senator Bernie Sanders once again made his pitch for voters to legalize marijuana in California this November. Speaking to a rally in East Los Angeles, Sanders told the crowd, “It makes sense to legalize marijuana at this particular point. So if I were here in your state, I would vote yes on that issue.” Last fall in Las Vegas when asked about that state’s legalization initiative, already on the ballot, Sanders said, “I suspect I would vote yes.” In Santa Monica, Sanders referred to the California’s Adult Use of Marijuana Act, still yet to qualify for the ballot, saying, “I tell you that if I lived in your state, I would vote for that initiative.”
PHOENIX, Arizona (AP) — A doctor is upset after the Veterans Affairs hospital in Phoenix blocked her from giving a lecture about marijuana’s effect on veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. This summer, Dr. Sue Sisley is conducting a study on PTSD and medical marijuana that is funded by a Colorado marijuana research grant. Although the Drug Enforcement Administration approved her work, the Phoenix VA Medical Center told Sisley she couldn’t give a presentation there. Medical marijuana is legal in Arizona, but it’s still a federal crime to possess pot. The VA center isn’t allowed to promote or recruit veterans for marijuana research, said Dr. Samuel Aguayo, associate chief of staff for research at the Phoenix hospital. Congress recently passed legislation that would allow VA doctors to discuss medical marijuana with veterans. Aguayo said the center might reconsider Sisley’s lecture if that bill is signed into law.
SAN FRANCISCO, California (CRN) – Former NFL Running Back Ricky Williams is a partner and spokesperson for Power Plant Fitness, a Bay Area gym believed to be the first to allow for cannabis use during workouts. Williams, known for his outspoken support for medical marijuana following an NFL career tormented by drug test failures, has partnered with Jim McAlpine, the founder of 420 Games, a series of 4.20-mile runs meant to change public perceptions of cannabis consumers.
SOUTH ROYALTON, Vermont (AP) – Black drivers stopped by Vermont State Police were five times more likely to be searched than white drivers, even though contraband was more likely to be found when white motorists were searched, according to a report on five years of traffic-stop data. The findings were presented Tuesday evening in a meeting of the State Police senior command staff and an anti-bias committee of police employees and residents. The presentation did not include raw numbers of African-Americans or members of other minority groups searched, but provided the total number of stops and the percentages by race and ethnicity. The percentage of stops of whites that resulted in searches was 1.1; the percentage involving black drivers was 5.1. Contraband was found 80 percent of the time in searches of whites and 68.5 percent of the time in searches of blacks.
BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (AP) – Police say a Louisiana man accused of making his 8- and 10-year-old relatives smoke marijuana faces cruelty charges. Baton Rouge police tell The Advocate that Jason Louis Taylor rolled marijuana blunts and provided them to the young boys on several occasions, instructing the children to smoke it. The police report says the 8-year-old boy was taken to the hospital in February after being told to smoke weed. The child later tested positive for marijuana. Police say both children said the 29-year-old Taylor allegedly smoked marijuana in front of them on several occasions. Taylor was arrested Wednesday on two counts of cruelty to juveniles and one count of illegal use of a controlled substance in the presence of a juvenile.