Pubdate: Fri, 16 Feb 2018
Source: State, The (SC)
Copyright: 2018 The State
Author: Crystal Hill


Now that marijuana is legal in California, people don't have to hide
their marijuana use -- in fact, some are smoking it right in officers'

But these pot smokers aren't being brazen. They're actually helping
police better detect impaired drivers on the road, CBS Los Angeles

Glendale police Officer Bryan Duncan told the news station that about
75 percent of the DUI arrests he makes these days are drug impaired --
"more cannabis than alcohol."

A group of smokers recently gathered at a hotel where they were first
given field sobriety tests, and then allowed to start smoking
marijuana, Inside Edition reported. They later took sobriety tests for
a second time to judge how the drug affected their mental and motor
skill, the news outlet said.

"Whether it's lack of convergence in the eyes, divided attention
issues, your ability to do two tasks at one time," said Officer
Duncan, CBS Los Angeles reported.

The "green labs" were launched in Colorado -- where recreational
marijuana became legalized in 2012 -- in 2015 by Chris Halsor,
Newsweek reported. Halsor is an attorney and the founder of
Understanding Legal Marijuana, LLC, which provides training and
consultation to public policy makers, law enforcement and other
officials on the "intricacies" of legal marijuana.

Recreational marijuana use became legal in California at the start of
this year.

Halsor told Newsweek that during the lab courses, which take place
over the course of two days, volunteers are told to smoke enough pot
"to get to a level where they would question their ability to safely
drive a car."

"That can mean a lot of different things for a lot of different
people, depending on their use," he said. "So, even with that
instruction, we typically get a spectrum of users within our volunteer

Volunteers have been eager to take part in the courses, so pot users
aren't all treated the same, CBS Los Angeles reported.

"It's different for everyone. If you're an avid user and you use it
more, it's going to affect you differently," said marijuana user
Sebastian Dominguez told the news station. Dominguez added that he
doesn't get drive after smoking.

"If I'm high, I don't want to drive," said Villegas. "Like why? If I'm
high, I just want to sit there."

Halsor told Newsweek that while some may think the classes are
"radical," it's important for police officers to be looking for impairment.

"What we don't want happening is that in those states, which allow for
the lawful possession and use of marijuana, we don't want people who
aren't impaired getting arrested," he said.

The green labs come as marijuana researchers begin educating officials
and the public in California on the benefits and risks of the drug,
The Sacramento Bee reported last month.
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