Frederick Police Say They’re Ready For Legalization Of Recreational Marijuana

It can be purchased at local dispensaries starting on Saturday, July 1st.

Marijuana Plant (Photo from National Institute on Drug Abuse)

Frederick, Md (KM) The purchase of marijuana for recreational use will become legal in Maryland beginning on Saturday, July 1st. Captain Kirk Henneberry with Frederick Police says personsĀ  21 and older can buy up to 1.5 ounces of cannabis from a licensed dispensary. “A person who’s interested in purchasing this personal use of marijuana from a dispensary can only use that on private property, inside a residence or on grounds which are private such as a yard,” he says.

But Captain Henneberry says possession of more than 1.5 ounces of cannabis is illegal. He says persons with between 1.5 ounces to 2.5 ounces of marijuana would be subject to a civil offense which could include a fine. :”If they have more than 2.5 ounces that is still a crime, and there’s a chance that they could be charged with a misdemeanor crime for possession of over 2.5 ounces,”: he says.

The law also says persons 21 and older can possess up to 12 grams of concentrated cannabis; cannabis products with up milligrams of Delta 9 THC; and ups to two cannabis plants.

Under the law taking affect this Saturday, individuals are not allowed to smoke or vape cannabis in public places such as parks, sidewalks, streets, bars, restaurants, on public transportation and inside places of employment. The law also bans the use of recreational marijuana inside a private motor vehicle.

The Maryland State Comptroller’s Office says any sales of recreational marijuana will be subject to a nine percent tax.

Captain Henneberry says anyone who uses recreational cannabis should not drive a motor vehicle. “Clearly, it’s an intoxicant. So whether it’s legal or not, it’s similar to alcohol now in that yes, you can enjoy it in certain places. However, when you get behind the wheel of a car, then we have public safety issues,” he says.

Frederick Police Officers have also been trained on this new law. “In each instance when we see the law change, our training unit will get a hold of the new law.. We’ll work with the State’s Attorney’s Office to develop a best practice. And then we’ll get training out to the officers whether it’s in a roll call setting, or an in-service,” says Captain Henneberry.

He also says officers can be trained electronically. “We can make a video, and an officer can use our software to watch a training video, take a test and get things done that way,” says Captain Henneberrry.

By Kevin McManus