Another Georgia county is suspending low-level cannabis enforcement following hemp legalization in the state, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. Cobb County Police Chief Tim Cox said the move is a “temporary procedural change” until a “remedy” is found. The decision comes after officials in Gwinnett County said they would no longer prosecute or make arrests for low-level possession crimes.
“After discussions with prosecutors, it appears that arresting someone for misdemeanor marijuana possession is not recommended. As a result, effective immediately, any misdemeanor amounts of marijuana that an officer encounters will be confiscated and sent to the Evidence Unit to be destroyed. A criminal charge will not be made until a solution can be found to this dilemma.” – Cox, in a statement, via the AJC
Cobb Solicitor General Barry Morgan said pending cases would not be dismissed but new cases would be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and that the Georgia Bureau of Investigation are “working on finding a new test that could differentiate [THC-rich] marijuana from hemp and cases will be held pending that.”
Gwinnet County officials indicated that there is currently no court-acceptable test for THC levels. The agency said they would continue making arrests, however, for felony cannabis crimes.
Hemp legalization has also forced some Texas cities to drop cannabis cases over the plant’s similarities to cannabis with THC concentrations higher than 0.3 percent – which defines hemp. Of Texas’ 10 most populous counties, just one district attorney said they would continue prosecuting low-level cannabis cases.
In Florida, some law enforcement agencies have said they would stop detaining people for cannabis odor because it could be either hemp or THC-rich cannabis.