South Dakota Law Officials Still Fighting War On Cannabis After Yes Vote

South Dakota may have voted for regulation but it looks as though there’s a way to go before law enforcement and the Chamber of Commerce see the changes as positive

The Argus Leader reports..


“Hopefully it won’t diminish our ability to conduct probable-cause searches in the field if we smell marijuana,” he said. “If it’s legal, is that going to diminish our ability to search vehicles? That’s going to be interesting to see how that plays out.”

Joe Weir

Weir said sometimes those probable-cause searches turn up guns, opioids or methamphetamine.

Weir said he’s hoping law enforcement agencies will have a quantifiable measurement of marijuana in the system where they can take action. If marijuana is decriminalized, he said, that takes away from law enforcement’s ability.

“In the field, we need to be able to quantify that level,” he said. “If they’re under the influence to a certain threshold, will we still have the ability to take action.”

David Owen

Weir said he’s also not a proponent of medical marijuana. 

“I’m not a doctor so I don’t have the ability to address medical treatment for things like seizures in children,” he said. “But I’m skeptical that there’s no other legitimately produced medication that wouldn’t serve the same end.”

Legalizing recreational marijuana use is also a concern for David Owen, president of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce. Owen was the chairman of the “No Way on Amendement A” campaign and said he too was disappointed at last week’s voting results.

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