On Saturday I came in to read police reports. I don’t normally do that on a Saturday, but I’m way behind and was out of town so, given the lousy weather, I decided to come in and catch up.
Here’s what I came away with:
A lot of people smoke pot. Yep, as if this is a surprise, it’s in fact true. Here’s a list of facts:
A lot of people smoke pot. We established that.
A lot of people smoke pot when other stuff happens.
Examples of “other stuff happens”:
A lot of people smoke pot in their cars. (None of them get speeding tickets.) They do get tickets for the following:
The reason we know that a lot of people smoke pot in the car is mostly due to the silly-stupid things they get into. First of all, don’t forget that regardless of your views, pot is illegal. That being said, when the cops pull your car over and find the ashtray full and the baggie on the console, you’re probably going to get charged with it. In some cases, the charges are left with a citation but most cases involve other things that lend the driver to a trip to jail.
We arrest a lot of people who were driving around, smoking pot, in a car with stolen tags or tags that have expired registration or no insurance. If you didn’t know, your tag says a lot about you. Insurance and any warrant info are on the tag registration. Knowing that, why smoke? The least you could do is warn the passengers that your tags are expired, you have no insurance, and your car is stolen. I’m sure they would want to know that before toking up. Talk about paranoid.
Pot is a material object. You can see it. The car is a material object and you can see that too. There is no magical invisible place inside the car. This includes the console, ashtray and under the driver’s or passenger’s seat. Once the probable cause is there, the cops are going to check further. Probable cause includes the piles of smoke that exit the window when you roll it down after being pulled over. I can tell you that in a given week, we probably have two dozen arrests in cars and apartments on small misdemeanor cases of marijuana possession because it was there to be seen.
Fact: Pot makes you think that dumb things are rational.
If you’re stopped and you’ve got pot on you, you might stay away from these well-worn excuses:
Look, just stay home. Life gives you enough paranoia. Why magnify it?