An Aurora Colorado man got a lot more than a pizza last week when he called Papa John’s. He got a visit from the police, who were there to check on the welfare of the man’s 9 year old daughter. The welfare-check was done because the pizza delivery man who came to drop off dinner smelled marijuana and was concerned the man had been smoking in front of the child.
Frederick Smith actually has a medical marijuana card. He was in the comfort of his own home, exercising his right under Colorado’s medical marijuana law, to relieve pain with the use of pot. According to Smith, he never smokes in front of his child and wasn’t smoking with her in the room that night either.
Smith uses marijuana to cope with residual pain from a bike accident and he represents many in the state who are allowed, under state law at least, to smoke the plant in their home.
Currently, there aren’t any laws specifically attributed to the use of medical marijuana around children, though an ambitious prosecutor might be able to make a case that exposure to the “drug” puts a child in harm’s way regardless of the legal nature of it. This hasn’t happened yet, however, and Smith was left alone that night after the police determined his daughter was okay.
Smith complained to the pizza company and has heard nothing in response. In response to this story from 9News, however, the company said it stands behind the driver’s call to police. “He was acting as a concerned citizen and for what he believes was the best interests of our community.”
Though there were no criminal charges brought in this case, it represents the fine line that medical marijuana users must walk when engaging in their legalized use of pot. Because marijuana is still considered a drug and because federal law does not necessarily recognize state laws allowing it for certain patients, the medical marijuana user is likely on edge a good deal of the time.
Many are hoping the state, and others, will eventually move to legalizing the substance altogether. And while support for such a measure may be higher than ever, it will likely take several years to see such a major shift in the majority and then in the mindset of the feds who still see marijuana as a Schedule I drug, the most dangerous substance out there.
Until that time, people will be charged with marijuana possession and those accused of bringing the drug into the state could face much more serious charges. If you are accused of a marijuana crime, contact our Colorado criminal defense attorneys today to discuss your case.