Pittsburgh downtown from the Duquesne Incline overlook

Tom Hamilton

A Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania medical cannabis patient was jailed for 10 days last week after an Allegheny County judge ruled that the THC in his system was a violation of his bond, which prohibits criminal activity, according to a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette report. Samson L. Bailey was later released after his physician provided proof of his medical cannabis certification to the court. Bailey was charged with credit card fraud last year. He reached a deal to pay the falsified charges and have the charges dropped.

“When they put me in handcuffs I was really confused, I didn’t understand what was going on. That was the hardest 10 days of my life.” – Bailey to the Post-Gazette

In Pennsylvania, law enforcement officers cannot access the state’s medical cannabis registry. So officers must rely on the patient having their identification card to verify they are patients in the program. Bailey said he had never received a copy of his ID card, and suggested that it might have been sent to the wrong address.

Pennsylvania Department of Health spokeswoman April Hutchinson said officers could call the department to verify a patient’s status, but noted there is no dedicated line to do so.

“I don’t know that it’s been an issue. This is a new program and there will be things that come up that are unique.” – Hutchinson to the Post-Gazette

Bailey said he was not using THC products at the time of the arrest. Rather, he was using CBD oil, which is legally available to everyone in the state.

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