How would you define an ineffective law? One that doesn’t deliver the intended result, or perhaps one that costs more than it is worth? Perhaps an ineffective law is one that society doesn’t see a need for but the government keeps in place no matter the effects. In the Badger Herald, the student newspaper of the University of Wisconsin, a budding scholar looks at the state’s ineffective marijuana laws and asks these very questions. [Read more…]Charged with a crime in Wisconsin? Please call (888) 828-6041.
The Journal Sentinel is reporting that prescriptions for narcotic painkillers like oxycodone and OxyContin are falling and one expert believes that this may signify the trend of increased prescription drug abuse as “turning a corner.” Unfortunately, the Sentinel report doesn’t look at what’s happening to those who are addicted to the powerful medications—are they simply quitting or are they turning to other means? [Read more…]
Following suit of the federal government and several other states, Wisconsin could be the next to ban synthetic marijuana and its components. Assembly Bill 57 was introduced last week to overwhelming support and it is likely to pass.
The FDA announced earlier this month that such synthetic marijuana products like K2 and Spice would be classified as Schedule I substances and listed as controlled substances. In their own press release, the DEA stated these substances have been shown to cause disorientation, anxiety attacks, dangerously high heart rate, blood pressure, vomiting, and convulsions.
Synthetic marijuana products are typically available at convenience stores and head shops. They looked like a leafy substance and were actually chemicals applied to a plant potpourri. Legislation across the country bans the chemicals responsible for the high.
Proposed new Wisconsin criminal charges would make a first offense possession of synthetic marijuana punishable by up to 6 months in jail and $1,000 in fines. A second or subsequent offense would be a Class I felony charge, carrying up to 3 years and 6 months behind bars and $10,000 in fines.
Interestingly, the Waukesha Patch reported a few weeks ago that local police there made their first arrest on charges of driving under the influence of K2. Because the substance had recently been banned by the DEA, local officials were able to arrest the suspect on an OWI charge.
The driver’s erratic behavior was first reported by an off-duty officer. When he was pulled over, the patrol officer could tell the driver was under the influence of something but couldn’t determine what it was. A breath test showed there was no alcohol present and the police called out an expert.
A drug recognition expert ran 10 tests on the driver before the driver admitted to smoking K2, a brand name of synthetic pot. Incidentally, Waukesha has a municipal ordinance banning the substance too. The driver was arrested for his first offense OWI.
There’s little doubt that AB 57 will pass. Similar laws are being passed throughout the country. The DEA ban is temporary, however, as feds study the effects of the substances and consider a more permanent remedy.