- Published on 20 June 2012
- Written by Cher Neufer, Ohio NORML Presdient
Although NORML mission does not include supporting gun ownership or laws for concealed carry, we would like to thank our members who called and wrote to their representatives to oppose SB305. Laws against marijuana very often have interactions with other issues such as gun ownership.
Last year NORML, spearheaded by Miami Valley NORML (the Cincinnati-Dayton chapter), aided in the passage of HB 54. That bill eliminated the prohibition of gun ownership against people with misdemeanor marijuana drug offense convictions. Previously Ohio law 2923.13 ( Possession of a Weapon While under Disability ) had stated anyone with a conviction for any drug charge, even a minor pot ticket, could not legally own or possess a gun.
Below is part of an article that talks about the addition of the words “visible” to SB305. While this is a step in the right direction, it looks like law enforcement will actually have to see pot in a hidden box in order to charge someone with a felony. There is a link to a very interesting video about residue produced by Ohioans For Concealed Carry.
Ohio NORML and our regional chapters will continue to work with or support any organization's efforts that interact in a positive manner with our mission to legalize marijuana for personal, medical, or industrial use.
Jeff Garvas, Ohioans For Concealed Carry
Thanks to the efforts of Ohioans For Concealed Carry and its members and supporters, the scheduled vote for SB305 has been postponed until the next Ohio House Session to be held on June 12th and OFCC requested amendments are expected thanks to the bill’s sponsor and Governor Kasich’s office.
On Wednesday OFCC Directors Gary Witt and Doug Deeken gave opposition testimony and formally presented the committee with our compelling video that demonstrates how drug residue is virtually everywhere. Nearly two hours of questioning these two gentlemen and an OFCC member in attendance followed before the committee voted 7-3 to send the bill to the House floor for a vote.
Following that committee hearing Ohioans For Concealed Carry worked aggressively to reach out to the various "NO" votes and friends in the legislature. One such friend of gun owners is Representative Cliff Rosenberger (R-86), who spearheaded the movement to rally “NO” votes through a 10pm caucus meeting. Words alone cannot describe how devoted to our cause Representative Rosenberger demonstrated he is Wednesday night.
Following a meeting between OFCC Director Gary Witt and officials at the Statehouse on May 24, SB305 (the "hidden compartment" bill) will soon be amended to address some of our most serious concerns. (see text below: Text that is struck out will be deleted by the amendment, while underlined text will be added)
"This section does not apply to a box, safe, container, or other item added to a vehicle which is commercially manufactured and advertised for the purpose of securing valuables, electronics, or firearms provided that at the time of discovery the box, safe, container or other item added to the vehicle does not contain a controlled substance or visible residue of a controlled substance."
- Published on 20 June 2012
- Written by Keith Stroup, NORML Legal Counsel
Sydney, Australia: Some 80 percent of drug dog 'alerts' in New South Wales in 2011 yielded no illicit substances, according to state government statistics published this week by the Sydney Morning Herald. According to the paper, in the first nine months of 2011, "14,102 searches were conducted after a dog sat next to a person, indicating they might be carrying drugs. But, in 11,248 cases, no drugs were found."
Statistics for 2010 showed a similarly high false positive rate. Of the 15,779 searches conducted after police-dog identification, no drugs were found in 11,694 cases, the Herald reported. The statistics were made public following a Parliamentary inquiry regarding the widespread use of drug dogs. Despite the high error rate, a spokesman for the NSW Police Minister said that the government "fully supported the use of dogs because police had found them effective."
Earlier this year, a study published in the scientific journal Animal Cognition reported that the performance of drug-sniffing dogs is significantly influenced by whether or not their handlers believe illicit substances are present. In 2004, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Illinois v. Caballes that an alert from a police dog during a traffic stop provides a constitutional basis for law enforcement to search the interior of the vehicle.