It Is Your Turn To Speak At The Podium

Below is a newsletter report by Senior Lead Officer Martin of Van Nuys
Community Police Station and is worthy of every medical cannabis
advocate’s time.

Officer Martin’s report presents an opportunity for every advocate in Los
Angeles to educate our communities about medical cannabis and present the
facts to elected officials and government offices.

Many of the officer’s concerns will be addressed by regulations. His
community police department should learn that city officials are in the
process of approving a moratorium on issuing of any new business licenses
for dispensaries and will then begin the process of drafting regulations
for medical cannabis dispensaries in our city.

His department should know that Officer Martin’s approach is misguided and
their energy would be better spent on protecting the community, not
scaring it.

Medical cannabis dispensaries do not cause crime. Prohibition causes
crime. Instead of voters having the service and protecting of our city’s
officers, we are under the threat that they will enforce the laws they
want, the way they want.

When a business knows that they do not have the support of local law
enforcement, that business is more likely to be robbed or burglarized and
owners are less likely to report the crime. It is not the existence of
the cannabis collective that causes the crime. It is the rhetoric of
officers such as John Smith and Officer Martin that sparks crime by
letting would-be robbers know that the local police do not honor
Proposition 215, do not want to protect patients as much as they want to
bust them. Would you call the police if you knew they would then search
and possibly arrest you instead of investigating the crime committed
against you? It’s already happened in the Valley.

There are currently three counties, San Diego, Merced and San Bernardino
that filed declaratory relief against San Diego NORML, the State of
California and California Director of Health and Human Services, Sandra
Shewry, contending that the Compassionate Use Act and our state’s Medical
Marijuana ID Card Program are preempted by the Controlled Substances Act.
The judge in this case has issued a tentative ruling in favor of
Proposition 215. His final decision is expecting within 60 days.

Our community members also deserve to know that Weedtracker is not an
educational resource. I suggest the following reading to start:
Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts by Lynn Zimmer, PhD., and John P. Morgan,
M.D. Marihuana Reconsidered by Dr. Lester Grinspoon
http://www.norml.org/index.cfm?Group_ID=7002
http://www.maps.org/mmj/

Although in no way comprehensive, this material will cover dozens of
medical conditions and reference thousands of other studies and
literature.

I encourage you not be frustrated by the misappropriation of time, energy
and funds by our local law enforcement but to use this opportunity to
educate the LAPD community police stations, your city council member, your
neighborhood resident council, neighborhood watch groups, anywhere this
issue comes up. We must be ready to provide the facts. You must get
involved. I hope you will join me making Los Angeles a better, healthier,
wiser place to live. Please read the alert below. Please contact us if
you have any questions or want to schedule a citizen advocate training.
_________________________

Van Nuys/North Valley Glen Basic Car Area 9A49
Senior Lead Officer Martin
Cellular Phone 818-731-2558
E-mail Address: 33678@lapd.lacity.org

* COMMUNITY ALERT*

As I mentioned in the October update, these medical marijuana
storefronts, these so-called “care givers” are continuing to open up for
business in the San Fernando Valley. Our community had a small victory
in this large-scale war when the D.E.A. shut down the clinic located at
7100 Van Nuys Boulevard, Suite #400. Unfortunately, they
re-opened for business a few days later.

This should be a REAL concern for community members as these
self-described “clinics” are opening and operating around schools,
churches, and government buildings. I do not believe that most citizens
who voted for Proposition 215 in 1996 had any idea that this
would happen. These clinics are unregulated and there is no legal source
for the marijuana they sell. They are NOT operated by licensed
pharmacists or doctors.

Most community members do not hear about the violent crime associated with
these clinics. The fact is these clinics have been burglarized for their
marijuana. In mid-September, a take over, armed robbery occurred at a
“clinic” in Hollywood. The suspects identified themselves as police
officers and used firearms to forcefully take the “clinic’s” marijuana
and money. Reasonable people should realize how dangerous a situation
such as this can become when you mix firearms, narcotics, and large sums
of money. My real concern is it is only a matter of time before a
community member sustains serious
bodily injury or worse.

Merced, San Diego and San Bernardino Counties have either sued or are in
the process of suing the State regarding the legality of Proposition 215.

Due to the discrepancies in State and Federal law, my efforts to thwart
the operations of these “clinics” have been muted by the advocates of
Proposition 215. I am therefore asking you, the community, to do the
following. You can educate yourself by going to
Weedtracker.com to view the “culture” behind the clinics. Once familiar
with the issues, write or otherwise contact your City, County, and State
elected officials and let them know your position on these “clinics.”

If you would like to become a Block Captain in your neighborhood, please
call the Community Relations Office at 818-374-9402, or call me on my
cellular telephone at 818-731-2558. If you would like a Neighborhood or
Business Watch Meeting, please notify me at the above numbers.

The non-emergency line is 1-877-ASK LAPD. For information on Department
services, dial 311. For any other problems in the area, please call me.
http://www.lapdonline.org/van_nuys_most_wanted/content_basic_view/6551

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