Many people in Ohio consider marijuana to be a relatively harmless drug. It is even believed to have a positive health effect on those who imbibe it medically. However, that won’t stop police from aggressively prosecuting those who are in possession of marijuana, grow it or traffic it. In fact, a recent report claims that more marijuana was seized in 2013 than any other drug.
It is reported that more than 20,000 pounds of the drug were seized last year. This may be because it is common for the drug to be produced, trafficked and sold in great quantities. Coming in at second place was synthetically made hallucinogenic drugs. Despite these numbers, some police officials believe that heroin presents the greatest threat to the public and that marijuana is seen as a gateway drug. Admittedly, officials claim that although heroin is a common deadly drug, marijuana is not associated with many deaths.
This may make it seem that crimes involving marijuana are relatively minor. However, this is far from the case. While possession of a few ounces of marijuana may result in a lighter sentence or even may be considered a misdemeanor charge in some situations, being convicted of manufacturing or selling the drug could have more serious consequences. The manufacturing or distribution of marijuana, in certain circumstances, may be considered a felonious crime.
Because of this it is important that any seizures of drugs be carried out in due accordance of the law. Per the Fourth Amendment, an officer needs probable cause, a valid arrest warrant or a valid search warrant to search a person’s home or vehicle. Should an illegal search or seizure take place, evidence obtained from such acts may not be admitted as evidence in court. Those who wish to learn more about search, seizure and the Fourth Amendment may want to consider discussing the manner with a professional, who can help them understand their rights.
Source: WKBN.com, “Ohio report: Marijuana most commonly seized drug in 2013,” Jonathan Stroshine, May 22, 2014