A bill introducing medical marijuana to the state of Pennsylvania was passed by the Senate in September 2014, but SB 1182, The Medical Cannabis Act, did not make it through the house this month. So, for now, medical marijuana still does not exist in the state.
In response to this, bill co-sponsor, Senator Daylin Leach is asking the District Attorney’s Association for help. In a letter addressed to Peter Johnson, President of the Pennsylvania District Attorney’s Association, Senator Daylin Leach writes,
“I ask that you perform an act of compassion. Given the likelihood that using lifesaving medical cannabis will not be a legal issue in Pennsylvania for much longer (it is already legal in 23 states and the District of Columbia), I ask that you consider using your prosecutorial discretion to forgo prosecution of any person for possession of cannabis if said person can demonstrate that they are using the cannabis for medical purposes.”
Dauphin County District Attorney, Ed Marsico does not see medical marijuana arrests as a problem. The 2012 year end report for Dauphin County shows that one-hundred-twenty-three people were arrested for marijuana possession. According to District Attorney Marisco, none of those arrests were medical marijuana patients. In an interview with Fox 43, Marsico said,
“I’ve never seen a case of the thousands of drug cases we had where a defendant claimed it was being used for medical purposes.”
Senator Leach told Fox 43 that he is not asking the District Attorney’s Association to ignore the laws, but he wants Pennsylvania residents to feel safe and comfortable knowing that if they are using marijuana as a medical treatment to save a life, they will not be prosecuted for it.
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