ISP: Regional marijuana laws don’t apply to Hoosiers


Rolled inside three states that have legalized marijuana for recreational or medical purposes, Indiana has become a regional outlier in its laws regarding pot.

Even if Hoosiers score legal weed from a Midwest neighbor, it’s not OK to bring it to Indiana.

“Our official stance is we’re gonna enforce the Indiana laws aggressively,” said Sgt. Dave Henderson, public information officer at the Indiana State Police Jasper Post. “And we’ll have to just play it by ear. But we’re not gonna change the way we do anything ... until the state law in Indiana changes.”

In Illinois, Michigan and Ohio, cannabis can be legally purchased and consumed in varying capacities.

The drug became fully legal in Illinois on Jan. 1. Michigan began recreational sales in December, and medical marijuana started being sold in Ohio about a year ago.

But these changes mean nothing for Indiana residents — or anyone who is found to have marijuana in their possession in the state.

“We’re just gonna keep doing what we do,” Henderson said.

He explained that to date, “everything’s about the same, really.” Area troopers have not seen a noticeable change in the amount of marijuana on nearby interstates. And the status quo remains in full effect.

Eleven states now allow the recreational use of marijuana. They include Alaska, California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Oregon, Nevada, Vermont and Washington.

In Indiana, possession of less than 30 grams of the drug is a misdemeanor offense, while holding 30 grams or more is a felony if you have a prior conviction for a drug offense.

The sale and use of cannabidiol oil — which has the potential to treat conditions like epilepsy, hyperactivity and pain — is currently legal in Indiana, if it falls within the legal 0.3% THC limit for CBD products.

Marijuana reform bills have already been filed in the Indiana House and Senate’s young 2020 legislative session.

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