------------------------------------------------------------------- Defense Lawyers Want Police To Disclose Task Force's Ways (The Oregonian says lawyers for Neil Jeffery Hauser of Bend are demanding to know whether Portland police illegally used a "trap and trace" device to provide Portland's Marijuana Task Force with the phone numbers of everyone who called American Agriculture, a Portland hydroponics supply store. Hauser is charged with posing as a police officer when he taped a phone conversation with an officer on the task force. Hauser's lawyers say the case could lead to the reversal of hundreds of marijuana grow convictions if a judge rules the trap was illegal and that evidence obtained as a result must be thrown out. In addition, hundreds of thousands of dollars in drug forfeiture assets might be up for grabs. According to cops, the Multnomah County District Attorney's office prosecuted an estimated 175 marijuana grow cases last year, 248 in 1997 and 364 in 1996. Official figures claim the Marijuana Task Force seized 126 marijuana grows last year and got $186,000 in forfeited cash, property and real estate.)Date: Thu, 11 Mar 1999 05:06:48 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US OR: Defense Lawyers Want Police To Disclose Task Force's Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Barry Smith (email@example.com) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: Oregonian, The (OR) Copyright: 1999 The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Address: 1320 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Author: David R. Anderson, of the [Portland] Oregonian staff DEFENSE LAWYERS WANT POLICE TO DISCLOSE TASK FORCE'S WAYS Portland's Marijuana Task Force is questioned about a phone tapping and address tracing procedure that could be illegal. By David R. Anderson of the [Portland] Oregonian staff Defense lawyers are demanding to know whether Portland police illegally used a "trap and trace" to secretly provide the Marijuana Task Force with the phone numbers of everyone who called a Portland indoor-growing supply store. The information came to light when a criminal defendant, who is charged with posing as a police officer, taped a phone conversation with an officer on the task force, according to documents the city provided the court. Police used phone records to track down suspected marijuana growers by obtaining the addresses from the phone numbers, checking to see if they were using enough electricity to sustain a grow operation, then knocking on their doors in so-called "knock and talks," according to the transcript of the conversation. Police have been trapping the phone of American Agriculture at 9220 SE Stark Street since at least 1995, according to the document. It is a case that defense lawyers say could affect hundreds of marijuana grow cases in Portland and beyond if a judge rules the trap was illegal and evidence obtained as a result must be thrown out of court. In addition, hundreds of thousands of dollars in drug forfeiture assets that officers seized might be up for grabs. "The implications of this are tremendous," said Phillip A. Lewis, an attorney representing one of the defendants. Lewis also said the information adds to concerns about the task force acting at the fringes of the law or beyond in pursuing marijuana growers --- and the forfeiture money that comes along with it. "I think that it is of great concern when we have a section of the police department acting seemingly with a great deal of independence and disregard for the law," Lweis said. But law enforcement officials say they are confident that they will win in court and defended the task force. "I would in no way characterize the Marijuana Task Force as over-zealous," said Capt. James Ferraris, who heads the Portland Police Drugs and Vice Division. The city and Police Bureau do not acknowledge the trap exists. If it does, they say it is legal. "I believe in my heart of hearts they have done nothing illegal," said David Lesh, a deputy city attorney. But even if the traps violated state law, further evidence gathered in the cases would be admissible because police either had independent evidence of marijuana growing or the defendants gave permission for police to search their homes, said Mark McDonnell, a Multnomah County senior deputy district attorney who heads the drug unit. "We're confident that we're not going to lose any of these cases," McDonnell said. The Multnomah County District Attorney's office prosecuted an estimated 175 marijuana grow cases last year, 248 in 1997 and 364 in 1996, said Tom Simpson, a management assistant. The task force seized 126 marijuana grows last year and got $186,000 in forfeited cash, property and real estate, Ferraris said. The trap and trace is like Caller ID in that it provides only the phone number of the caller. The 1989 Legislature approved use of trap and trace if police could show a judge there is probable cause to think a person has committed or is about to commit a serious crime, including a drug offense. However, the Legislature placed more restrictions on the use of traps in Oregon than federal law allowed. Specifically, a trap could only be used for 30 days, which may be extended by an application for another 30 days. Defense lawyers argue that police have violated that by using the trap continually for several years. The two sides argued before Multnomah County Circuit Judge Michael Marcus last month over whether the city sould have to turn over information about trap and trace to lawyers for 18 defendants. Marcus, who has seen the police documents, ruled that the city must tell each defendant whether he was the subject of a trap and trace. The two sides will continue the legal wrangling March 16 over what information the city will have to release. The information about the trap became public after an investigation of a Bend man for growing marijuana. Oregon State Police troopers arrested Neil Jeffery Hauser and seized 83 marijuana plants from his home, according to court documents. On June 3, Hauser pretended to be a Bend police officer and called Officer Nathan Shropshire, a member of the Portland Police Marijuana Task Force, according to the documents. Hauser taped the conversation without Shropshire's knowledge. Shropshire told Hauser that before 1995, police got a court order to trap and trace every incoming phone number to American Agriculture. US West would give him information every week on computer, which police would run through the power companies. "And then ... we just go from there," Shropshire said. "You know, you go out and take a look at it, and for the most part we start all our investigations that way and go from that to an occupant." Shropshire said he renewed the court order every 30 days. He also said police never referred to the trap in their affidavits to obtain search warrants. Hauser is being prosecuted for felony criminal impersonation. An attorney representing American Agriculture filed a notice with the city in November that the company intends to sue the city. In the tort claims notice, attorney David W. Owens claims the trap and trace was illegal. Owens said in an interview that the device violated his client's right to privacy and interfered with prospective customers. In a separate case, American Agriculture filed a lawsuit against the city and the Police Bureau in October 1995, claiming police slandered the store and intentionally interfered in its business relations. In May 1997, the city and American Agriculture settled. The company dismissed its lawsuit in exchange for the city agreeing that police would no longer conduct open surveillance, which might scare away customers. The settlement also calls for the city to pay $1,000 for each occurrence that it violates the agreement. So far, American Agriculture has not claimed any violations. Officers with the Marijuana Task Force testified in November that they first learned of the house where Steven Douglas Dons shot and killed Officer Colleen Waibel through surveillance of American Agriculture. During covert surveillance, they followed a car back to Dons' home and watched as someone unloaded equipment into the house. David Anderson, 503 294-7663, DavidAnderson@news.oregonian.com
------------------------------------------------------------------- Knock, Knock, You're Busted (A lengthier version in Willamette Week, in Portland, includes the transcript of the second of two phone calls to the Marijuana Task Force in Portland by Neil Jeffery Hauser of Bend. Willamette Week also dicusses other nefarious tactics used by police to ferret out pot gardens without having to bother getting warrants. But the free shopper believes "there's no real way to measure whether the task force has dampened Portland's ganja habit," so here's a clue: Ask a few medical marijuana patients in Portland and California, and you'll find cannabis on the illicit market costs more in California.) Date: Sun, 14 Mar 1999 17:16:09 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US OR: Knock, Knock, You're Busted Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Barry Smith Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: Willamette Week (OR) Contact: email@example.com Address: 822 SW 10th Ave., Portland, OR 97205 Fax: (503) 243-1115 Website: http://www.wweek.com/ Author: Maureen O'Hagan Note: This article started on the front page and contains three significant sidebars (associated stories), below. KNOCK, KNOCK, YOU'RE BUSTED How Portland Cops Push The Limits Of The Law To Crack Down On Pot Growers. Want to see a pot grower shake in his Birkenstocks? It's as easy as knocking on his front door. That's because over the last few years, a simple knock-knock-knock has come to be recognized as the official calling card of the Portland Police Bureau's Marijuana Task Force, which has busted pot growers at the astonishing rate of almost one every working day. While there's no real way to measure whether the task force has dampened Portland's ganja habit, the group has taken truckloads of pot off the street. In four years, officers have hauled in about 30,000 marijuana plants and arrested at least 750 growers. They've seized hundreds of thousands in assets under laws that allow authorities to confiscate a drug dealer's ill-gotten gains. That the task force has accomplished this with just six officers makes the record even more impressive--and more curious to those who question its methods. Other than the tragic 1998 marijuana bust of Steven Dons, which left one police officer dead and two others wounded, the task force has been virtually unstoppable. Time and time again, defense lawyers have argued that the task-force tactics are coercive and invade of citizens' privacy - a belief that even some police officers and prosecutors have privately told WW they share. Butt those arguments haven't been proven in the courtroom. In the ongoing cat-and-mouse game between growers and the law, the law has clearly been winning. If the pot growers have their way, however, the task force could soon lose one of its most potent secret weapons. On March 16 Multnomah County Circuit Judge Michael Marcus will make a ruling on motions filed by 14 criminal-defense lawyers who claim that the task force has been illegally gathering evidence against pot suspects. The arguments date back to last summer, when a marijuana grower discovered that for three years, the task force had been surreptitiously monitoring phone calls to a store that sells indoor gardening supplies and using that information to target suspects. To pot growers, the discovery was like a Holy Grail: If Judge Marcus decides in favor of the defense lawyers' motions, current charges against some growers could eventually be dismissed. At this point, it's difficult to predict what will happen in the courtroom. But no matter what Judge Marcus rules, some say the discovery of the phone monitoring is just one more bit of evidence in a mounting case against the task force. That's not to say this is a bunch of rogue cops acting outside of the law. But when looked at as a whole--from the secret phone monitoring to the scores of convictions--the task forces starts bearing a resemblance to Big Brother. "You have to do a lot of these cases before you start getting that funny feeling," says Michelle Burrows, a defense lawyer. "If all of the judges knew all of the facts of all of these cases, they would sit back in their chairs and say, 'Something smells funny here.'" That the task force is going after marijuana--which this state's voters have approved as a medical treatment and decriminalized in small quantities--makes the smell that much more sour. For at least 20 years, pot connoisseurs nationwide have believed that some of the best bud is grown in Oregon. Years ago, when marijuana cultivation was strictly an outdoor activity, it made perfect sense. With Oregon's moist climate and abundant federal forest land on which to grow, the illegal crops thrived. In the last decade or so, that practice became too risky: Not only were the crops easy prey for thieves, but police began using airplanes, which made the once-hidden caches easier to spot. As a result, pot farming moved indoors. Now illicit gardeners use expensive halide lights and hydroponic equipment, which allows the plants to grow without soil. Light, heat and nutrients can be carefully controlled and replicated, whether you're in Astoria or Antarctica. What's more, a new crop can be harvested every three or four months instead of once a year. Still, whether it's because of tradition, this state's relatively lax marijuana laws or some sort of collective unconscious that gives us greener thumbs, Oregonians continue to have a reputation as primo pot growers. Of course, growing quantities of marijuana is still against the law. So as the marijuana growers changed their methods, so did the authorities. In 1995, the Portland Police Bureau formed a specialized Marijuana Task Force and came up with new ways to target the indoor crops. The task force was the brainchild of Sgt. James Hudson, then a 17-year veteran of the bureau who was assigned to the Drug and Vice Division. Hudson (nicknamed "Gator" for his alma mater, Florida State University) believes that marijuana is as dangerous as other drugs, and he says it's also more prevalent. With Chief Charles Moose's stamp of approval and a federal grant, Hudson recruited three other veteran Drug and Vice Division officers--Kim Keist, Nate Shropshire and Brian Schmautz--who have formed the core of the task force ever since. What's notable about the group is what they're not--stereotypical jug-head types who'd rather tackle you than talk. Instead, they're hard-working, relatively laid back and, most of all, clever. Some of the stoners they arrest even call their captors nice. The group's superiors call them effective. In its first year, the task force made 302 arrests, well over one every working day. That translates into a per officer arrest rate three times higher than the rest of the Drug and Vice Division. The Marijuana Task Force says the area was ripe for a crackdown. "Growers in this region present a target rich environment," the most recent Drug and Vice Division annual report says, "and are there for the taking as fast as the task force can get to them." Not only is Portland a "target rich environment," but it boasts comparatively rich targets. The task force takes advantage of civil forfeiture laws, which allow authorities to seize any cash and property that can be tied to drug dealing. The tool is extra potent against pot growers. "More than any other group we deal with on drug offenses, people that grow marijuana are otherwise fairly middle class," says Mark McDonnell, who heads one of two drug units in the district attorney's office. "A much greater percentage hold down a job, own a home." In the task force's first year of existence, marijuana-related forfeitures more than covered the officers' salaries, something the rest of the Drug and Vice Division couldn't even imagine. Last year, the task force seized 22 houses from accused pot growers, compared to the two houses the rest of the Drug and Vice Division seized from other types of drug offenders. The task force officers are good at what they do, but there's something more to their success than skill and hard work. For several years, they've been able to keep one of their tools--the stealth device that leads them to growers in the first place--a closely guarded secret. A secret, that is, until a pot grower named Neil Hauser came along. When the Oregon State Police came knocking on Hauser's door last spring, he just couldn't figure it out. There's no question the Bend resident was growing 83 marijuana plants--that much Hauser concedes. But what, he wondered, gave him away? Hauser isn't the only guy who has asked this question. "For a long time, a lot of us were in a puzzlement," says defense lawyer Pat Birmingham. "How were they selecting our clients?" With a little investigation of his own, Hauser found the answer, something top defense lawyers had been trying to do for several years. All it took was some acting--a little game of cops and stoners, if you will. Only this time, the tables were turned. In mid-June, Hauser called the Portland Police Bureau and got task-force member Shropshire on the line. What happened next is a matter of debate. Shropshire says that Hauser claimed to be a Bend police officer; Hauser denies telling that lie, although he did drop some carefully calculated suggestions to that effect. In any case, with a few open-ended questions, Hauser wheedled the whole story out of Shropshire. The cop told Hauser that the task force had used a device known as a "trap and trace" that was secretly put on the phone of American Agriculture, a business on Southeast 92nd Avenue and Stark Street that sells lighting and growing equipment. (For a transcript of the conversation between Shropshire and Hauser, visit www.wweek.com.) [See below - ed.] The device is, in essence, like Caller ID, except the police, not American Agriculture, get the numbers of every customer who calls the business. The cops then use the customers' phone numbers to learn their addresses--and, more importantly, to develop a list of suspects. "For the most part," Shropshire told Hauser, "we start all our investigations that way." The idea was ingenious: Hit the growers where they shop. The police won't say whether they're still using the device. Hauser knew he had discovered something important. He had called American Agriculture, and the task force must have tipped off the police in Bend. As it happens, Hauser's case was dismissed because of a technicality. More important, an ex-lawyer named Larry Olstad heard his story and began spreading the word about trap and trace. When the folks at American Agriculture found out their phone was, in essence, tapped, they weren't very happy. Word is they're considering a civil lawsuit, but the owners of the company did not return a call from WW. It's clear, however, that they have a gripe. After all, none of their products are illegal. And their customers aren't limited to pot growers. In fact, even Judge Marcus, the jurist who is scheduled to rule on the issue Tuesday, revealed in court that he once bought something from the company, a blue plastic barrel used for training his dogs. The reaction from the defense bar was swift. "The difference between what these guys are doing and a legitimate police investigation is they have no specific, probable-cause belief that a crime is being committed," says defense lawyer Burrows. (Probable cause is an important legal safeguard that protects citizens from unfair police intrusion.) Working from initial research done by Olstad, a number of lawyers joined together to challenge the legality of the use of the trap and trace device. Last month, during a day-long hearing in Marcus' courtroom, the city and the DA's office argued that the police had a court order to use the device. Defense lawyers countered that they've used it too broadly and for too long. The statute regulating trap and trace, they pointed out, is very narrowly construed. It requires police to establish probable cause that a crime is being committed and obtain a court order, which is only good for 30 days. The idea is to put constraints on police so they don't use it like a "gill net," says Olstad. But that's exactly what the task force did, according to a number of defense lawyers. First, they point out, a phone call to a legitimate business is skimpy evidence on which to open an investigation. Defense lawyer Bob Thuemmel calls the tactic Orwellian. "The use of the device appears to be geared to all individuals who call American Agriculture, whether it is a Dr. Feelgood type looking for the latest in marijuana technology or old Mrs. Peabody down the street whose dahlias need something more in the way of spring fertilizer," he wrote in court papers. It's hard to tell exactly how many of the people on which the task force opens investigations turn out to be law abiding. Officer Keist has testified that about half of the investigations turn up nothing. Defense lawyers have also hammered on the issue of the 30-day limit. Although authorities aren't talking, it appears that they applied for an extension of the court order every month. Even so, the use of the device for three years seems to violate the spirit, if not the letter, of the law. Judge Marcus will decide on Tuesday whether the defense is entitled to more information on the use of the device. From there, the lawyers may then argue that charges against their clients should be dismissed. Their argument is based on a legal theory known as the "fruit of the poison tree": If the use of the device is found to be illegal, any evidence found while using it is tainted and should be thrown out. Whether or not they're successful in this case, defense lawyers say the use of trap and trace is part and parcel of a larger method of operation that goes right up to the edge of what is lawful. "I think what's sort of startling is the way that the courts analyze these legal doctrines," says Margee Paris, a criminal law professor at University of Oregon. "They break it down into these little pieces, and at the end they find it was all legal. But when you look at the whole picture, it becomes very disturbing." The defense lawyers say that the only way to truly understand what they are arguing is to look at the way the task force operates. Every month, officers downloaded the phone numbers of American Agriculture customers from the trap and trace device and used them to develop a list of suspect addresses. Police say they try to screen out law-abiding citizens by first checking electricity records for unusual power usage. Critics feel this, too, is an invasion of privacy. Normally, power companies consider these records so private that they will turn them over only to the subscriber. Moreover, a high electricity bill isn't evidence of a crime. After all, you could be using American Agriculture products to grow hydroponic tomatoes. After that initial screen comes the "knock and talk." Although the technique didn't get widespread publicity until the 1998 Steven Dons fiasco, in which Hudson and Keist were wounded and Officer Colleen Waibel was killed, Portland officers have been using it since 1985. Well over half the time, when a smooth-talking task-force officer (like Schmautz, who studied acting) knocks on a door, he's allowed inside. Even marijuana growers usually agree to these "consent searches." In most cases, finding a crop of the green stuff is as simple as that--no time-consuming search warrant necessary. Police say that's because even crooks feel guilty. "People who do things that are wrong have a conscience," says Capt. James Ferraris, who heads the Drug and Vice Division. Others disagree that guilt is the motivating factor. "The Portland Police Bureau...will go up to a person's front door and not take no for an answer," says defense lawyer Birmingham. In light of the evidence, the complaint may sound hollow. Most of the people investigated, after all, are guilty of a crime. When law abiding citizens are swept into their net, though, things look different. Just ask Denise and Michael Harrington. The Laurelhurst couple runs a well-regarded company that teaches people to communicate better. One of their larger clients is Nike, which has hired them to work with Ken Griffey Jr. and Tiger Woods. A few years ago, they even conducted a seminar for the Portland Police Bureau. The Harringtons live in a neighborhood of perfectly manicured lawns, with Volvos and baby strollers outside each door. A year or so ago, the couple was surprised to open their door to two plainclothes police officers from the Marijuana Task Force. "They said they had a complaint we were growing marijuana," Denise Harrington recalls. "We just about died laughing." Even though the officers had badges, they flashed them quickly, and then asked to come in. "They could be anybody," she says. From watching cop shows on TV, she knew she didn't have to let them in. So she and her husband said no. "They said if people don't let them come in, they take it to the next level," Denise says. "They said, 'We'll continue investigating until we find out what's going on.' They got a little harder in the way they were talking to us." Soon three more officers showed up; one was in the neighbor's driveway peering into the Harrington's yard. "They're hanging around, they're embarrassing you in your neighborhood," Denise says. "It's escalating. It's so stressful that they really intimidate you into making decisions to give up your rights." After almost two hours, the Harringtons let the police inside. The officers conducted a thorough search but found nothing. "It was a picture, to me, that you are guilty until proven innocent in their minds," Michael Harrington says. The Harringtons, who had only lived in their house for a few months at the time, have no idea why police showed up. They have never called American Agriculture, but it's possible that a previous owner did. Police won't say what led them there, but the investigation is now closed. Aside from the use of the trap and trace device, the task force's techniques have thus far been upheld by the courts, despite the arguments of defense lawyers. "I heard a judge compare the Marijuana Task Force to a tax consultant," recalls Deputy DA McDonnell. "If you hire a tax consultant, he's going to do everything he can legally to get you all your deductions. I think the citizens expect the police to do everything they can within the bounds of the law to apprehend criminals." But their zealousness has raised questions, even among cops and prosecutors. While they aren't criticizing their colleagues, some have privately told WW they have mixed feelings about aggressive marijuana prosecution. Though the drug is illegal, they consider it far less problematic than other substances, even alcohol. In addition, they say the task force works very hard, but it doesn't send many people to prison. That's because lawmakers, voters and judges in this state have ranked marijuana growing a lesser concern than other crimes. Moreover, according to the DA's office, most pot growers they prosecute are first-time offenders. And most first-time growers only get probation, plus some jail time or a work release program. There's also the memory of Colleen Waibel. "I think there's a new look at these things," says police union vice president Tom Mack. "We're getting killed over things that judges are sentencing people to less than six months for." Another officer puts it more bluntly. "I don't want any more policewomen killed because someone is smoking a joint," he says. In truth, questions about the task force are more ones of policy and priorities than of law. For now, however, it's a policy the Police Bureau has no plans to change, according to Drug and Vice Division head Ferraris. "They have been very successful," he says. "At this point it's a viable unit of the Drug and Vice Division, and I certainly don't see it being dissolved or abolished in the near future." The question is: What are citizens willing to sacrifice in order to fight the war on drugs? "Police depend on people's respect for law enforcement to get their jobs done, and these cases abuse that respect," says Ed Jones, a public defender. "This is really a self-defeating program. What they're doing is encouraging people to not answer the door and not be respectful to the police. But that note probably won't come due until long after these cops are retired." [sidebar notes:] Last year, Oregon voters approved medical marijuana legislation allowing people with "debilitating" illnesses to use and grow up to seven pot plants. Sgt. James Hudson's quick thinking cut short Steven Dons' attack. He retired from the force after the traumatic event. Over the past few years, forfeitures have decreased for two reasons. The cops have grown more conservative in what they seize, and drug offenders are renting instead of owning homes. Officer Kim Keist testified more than a year ago that the task force had conducted about 1,500 knock and talks. "If all of the judges knew all of the facts of all of these cases, they would sit back in their chairs and say, 'Something smells funny here.'" --lawyer Michelle Burrows Deputy District Attorney Mark McDonnell says he's not worried about the latest legal challenge to the Marijuana Task Force: "I expect we'll get convictions in all these cases." American Agriculture already sued the Portland Police once for aggressive surveillance tactics, settling the case in May 1997. Police say as few as 10 plants, harvested throughout the year, can be worth as much as $30,000 to $40,000. When the police come to your door without a warrant, you don't have to let them in. But they are not legally required to tell you that you may refuse their request, either. Even Judge Marcus, the jurist who is scheduled to rule on the issue Tuesday, revealed in court that he once bought something from American Agriculture Defense lawyer Pat Birmingham says police use "bluffing and intimidation" in their "consent" searches. American Agriculture may file a civil lawsuit against the police. After he or she gathers evidence of a crime, it usually takes an officer two to four hours to get a search warrant. A knock and talk is much more efficient. A handbook used by the Marijuana Task Force says "knock and talks increase arrests, [and] the agency also realizes funds from asset seizure with only minimal investigative expense." After downloading your phone number from the trap and trace, police usually wait three or four months to knock on your door. That's how long it takes marijuana seedlings to bud. "The Portland Police Bureau...will go up to a person's front door and not take no for an answer." --defense lawyer Pat Birmingham Although police initially seize ownership of pot growers' homes, that doesn't mean a grower has to move. Normally, growers enter into plea bargains and forfeit just a portion of the equity in their home. Michelle Burrows, who specializes in defending drug suspects whose property is seized, has trained other lawyers on the Marijuana Task Force's techniques. *** [Lead Story Sidebar: Read the transcript of a taped conversation, in which a member of the Marijauna Task Force unknowingly revealed their techniques.] In early June, after he was arrested for growing marijuana, Bend resident Neil Hauser called the Portland Police Bureau and asked to speak with the Marijuana Task Force. He was connected with Nate Shropshire, a 16-year veteran of the Bureau. By means that Hauser won't reveal, he got Shropshire to talk about Task Force techniques. Hauser called back a second time and pumped Shropshire for more information, this time recording the conversation. Lawyers challenging the Task Force's techniques have included a transcript of this conversation in public court files. "NS" stands for Nate Shropshire. "RC" stands for Rex Cattock, the pseudonym Hauser used during the conversation. Although Hauser's marijuana case was dismissed, he was charged with impersonating an officer because of his talks with Shropshire. Woman What can I help you with? Man Yes, is Nate Shropshire back there? Woman Umm...I can check to see. Can I ask who's calling? Man Yes, this is umm...umm...anyway Rex Cattock. Woman I'm sorry. Say again? Man Rex Cattock. Woman Hold on a sec. RC Hey Nate. NS Hey. RC This is Rex. How ya doing? NS Good. RC Calling back from Bend here. NS Yeah. RC How was your little excursion? NS Oh, it was OK. I just didn't have enough people to help me do what I need to do because we had two houses next door growing outdoor plants, and so I got one, OK? And then other ones--they were like 11 two-inch dead clones [marijuana seedlings] almost in the back yard--and we just went over and grabbed and said, "Forget it. Forget it." RC Do you get a lot of the outdoor stuff over there? NS No, not really. RC Really? NS Sometimes, you know, in the summer, but for the most part, we don't. All of their stuff is indoors. RC Sure. I know. I didn't think you had time to do anything on that, but I wanted to call back and see when...how long it might take you to get that information. NS It will just take me...ahhh...long enough to run through the...ahhh...I have all that stuff on disk. RC OK. NS If it's there I'll, ahhh, bring it up. RC What does that mean. You got a disk? NS I have a disk that I get sent from, actually I download, ahh, what I'm doing is I have this company who is a...they sell indoor growing stuff. RC Oh, OK. NS Basically. And what we did in 1995...I started investigating it, actually before that, but we wrote a trap and trace order on their phone number, so everybody who calls into their phone number is trapped and then I, you know, write in that court order. I've got information from US West. RC OK. NS We simply download every week via computer. RC Really... NS ...and all that information so then I take that information [and] run it through the power companies. RC Umm, OK. NS And then those, you know...we just go from there. RC Sure. NS And I, ahh, you know, ahh, a lot of it [how we choose whom to target] has to do with age of people, type of power, type of house. RC Sure. NS You know. You have a lot of people look at it, and for the most part, we start all our investigations that way, and ahh, go from that to a knock and talk. RC So, ahh, the shop is actually working with you. NS Ohh, no, no, no... RC Oh. NS They have no clue. RC OK. NS They have no clue that we are trapping the phone numbers. RC Oh, OK. NS So, ahh... RC No, I remember hearing that there was two or three light shops over there. NS There's...there's, yeah, there's American Agriculture, Light Manufacturing, and...ahh...Rain or Shine. RC Oh, OK. I think I've heard that one before. NS And ahh...you know... RC And you've got all three of those. NS No. I just have the one, American Agriculture. I have done the Light Manufacturing, but it wasn't as profitable. RC OK. NS Theirs is pretty much smaller, you know, ahh, personal use, hydroponic growers. RC OK. NS So that means that we don't have that one going. We do have the one going right now at American Ag. RC So you worked it out with US West? That's great. NS Well, I have a court order that allows me to do it. I, ahh, you know, every 30 days I re-up that court order. RC OK. NS And, ahh, so, get the information back and that's when we start passing it off. I mean, if it's in Bend and if it's places where we're not going to get to... RC Sure. You pass it on. NS...Through DOJ [the Department of Justice] we'll pass them off, and if I know somebody in a particular area, I'll call them and say, "Hey, we got this going, and this is the way, this is how we got it." RC Sure. NS Don't, you know...try not to use it in an affidavit. RC Sure. NS We have not ever referred to the trap in our affidavits. RC OK. NS And...ahh...you know, if we, if that's all we had, then we probably wouldn't, you know... RC Correct. Then you would just build it off of there. NS That's, yeah, we just go from there, but ahh... RC With their 800 number, you probably get calls all over the country. NS Well, we don't trap their 800 number. What we do is order calls... RC Ohh, OK. NS It's an interesting thing. RC Ohh... NS Yeah, you're right. I mean, the last time we did that, we had...I mean the stack of paper was like a half of ream, and we did...we sent that to DOJ and the DOJ disseminated the information all over the place. They got some guy down in California as a result of that. RC Keeping them busy. NS Yeah. RC That's fantastic. Well, I have to take off tomorrow. Umm...why don't I get back to you on Friday. Are you going to be around on Friday? NS No. RC No, OK, why don't I give you a call mid-week. NS OK. RC We are in no big hurry and I appreciate everything. NS OK. RC And I'll give you a call probably Wednesday. NS OK. What was your phone number? RC My number is 388-5551. And I will give you a buzz on Wednesday. I appreciate everything that you've done. NS You bet. RC Alright, sir. NS Alright. RC Take it easy. NS Bye. RC Bye. *** [Sidebar: Sniff and Grab: how the police are getting around those pesky warrants.] SNIFF AND GRAB One of the most frequently cited examples of how far the Marijuana Task Force will go in its efforts to catch pot growers is the use of a technique defense lawyer Bruce Howlett has nicknamed the "sniff and grab." Under normal circumstances, police can't enter someone's home without either the resident's permission or a warrant. The only exception is in "exigent circumstances"--for example, if there's a hostage situation inside. Simply growing marijuana doesn't qualify. Task Force Officer Brian Schmautz has perfected an ingenious way to get around that constraint. When a suspect refuses to give Schmautz permission to enter the house--and when Schmautz believes he can smell growing marijuana--he reaches out as if to shake hands with the suspect. The suspect, naturally, reaches across the threshold to return the gesture. Instead of shaking hands, though, Schmautz grabs the suspect's arm and yanks him outside. Once he gets the suspect out the front door, Schmautz can legally place him under arrest on suspicion of growing marijuana. Schmautz described it this way in one report: "I shook hands with him and thanked him for his time. As I was shaking hands with him, I took his hand into custody, and the remainder of his body followed out of the doorway." Schmautz wouldn't talk to WW about his technique, but defense lawyers say he uses it whenever he gets the chance. The handshake trick is not unheard of in police circles, although it may be more acceptable in apprehending, say, a murderer than a marijuana grower. There is no doubt that it's "pushing the envelope," according to one law enforcement source. Another told WW, "[It's] not crossing the line, but it's walking the line." *** Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 17:15:20 -0800 From: Paul Freedom (firstname.lastname@example.org) Organization: Oregon Libertarians Patriots To: Constitutional Cannabis Patriots (email@example.com) Subject: [cp] Att! KNOCK AND TAlk-additional info. -------- Original Message -------- Subject: Hey Paul: Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 07:09:13 -0800 From: wolfeyes (firstname.lastname@example.org) Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: CWA To: Paul Freedom (firstname.lastname@example.org) Carl Worden wrote: hey Paul Did you happen to see Maureen O'Hagan's article in Willamette Week? That was the direct result of our work. We gave her that story, including the lead on the taped telephone conversation. Pray for a miracle March 16th, when the judge will rule on the admissibility of the telephone evidence. If he declares it an illegal search, Portland will have Hell to pay, because it will open the doors to reversal of all that forfeited property, etc. One thing bothers me: O'Hagan left out the transcript of the first call Neil Hauser made, where Detective Shropshire tells him to "Just say he could smell marijuana even if he can't". Man, that is as incriminating as it gets. Shropshire even admits they's done that hundreds of times! Did Maureen leave that out on purpose?? I don't know. She has a copy now, because yours truly sent it to her yesterday. Maybe all you guys ought to send her a note and ask her why she omitted it. Carl F. Worden Liaison & Intelligence Officer Southern Oregon Militia *** To subscribe to the Constitutional Cannabis Patriots send a blank message to email@example.com Posting:To post to the Constitutional Cannabis Patriots send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org Constitutional Cannabis Patriots http://www.teleport.com/~nepal/canpat.htm
------------------------------------------------------------------- Bill gutting the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act/Measure 67, HB 3052, now available online (A list subscriber posts the URL for the full text of legislation recently proposed by Oregon state representative Kevin Mannix with support from the Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police.) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 10:10:47 -0800 To: email@example.com From: "D. Paul Stanford" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: DPFOR: bill gutting OMMA/M67, HB 3052, now available on-line Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: DrugSense http://www.drugsense.org/ The full text of Rep. Mannix's bill, HB 3052, to gut the OMMA, M67, is now on-line at: gopher://gopher.leg.state.or.us:70/00/measure.dir/House_Measures/hb3000.dir/ hb3052g.int Rep. Mannix's office also faxed me a copy of HB 3052 this morning. Yours truly, D. Paul Stanford *** We are working to regulate and tax adult marijuana sales, allow doctors to prescribe cannabis and allow the unregulated production of industrial hemp! Campaign for the Restoration and Regulation of Hemp CRRH P.O. Box 86741 Portland, OR 97286 Phone: (503) 235-4606 Fax: (503) 235-0120 Web: http://www.crrh.org/
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pierce County teacher suspended in drug investigation (The Seattle Times says an unidentified teacher at Curtis High School, a 15-year-veteran of the University Place School District, has been suspended with pay after police found several bags of a substance believed to be methamphetamine in his private desk on campus.) From: "Bob Owen@W.H.E.N." (email@example.com) To: "_Drug Policy --" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: WA teacher suspended in drug investigation Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 19:36:35 -0800 Sender: email@example.com Posted at 08:21 a.m. PST; Wednesday, March 10, 1999 Pierce County teacher suspended in drug investigation by Jake Batsell Seattle Times staff reporter A veteran teacher at Curtis High School in Pierce County has been suspended with pay after police found several bags of a substance believed to be methamphetamine in his private desk on campus. The 43-year-old man has not been arrested, but his case was to be forwarded to Pierce County prosecutors today, said county sheriff's spokesman Ed Troyer. Troyer said a janitor found four or five bags containing a white powdery substance and drug paraphernalia in the man's desk Friday while cleaning in a private teacher's room at the high school in University Place. The janitor alerted school officials, who in turn notified police. Field tests conducted by police Monday found that the substance allegedly was methamphetamine. The substance will not be officially identified until the state crime laboratory completes additional tests, Troyer said. Those results are due in about two weeks. Troyer said there was no indication that students were involved in any way or that the teacher was selling drugs. "It looks like an isolated incident, with just personal use," Troyer said. Police did not release the name of the teacher, who has taught in the University Place School District for 15 years, because he has not been arrested or charged. The teacher was not present when the substance was found in his desk, and police were still investigating whether it belonged to him, Troyer said. Jake Batsell's phone message number is 206-464-2595. *** When away, you can STOP and RESTART W.H.E.N.'s news clippings by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Ignore the Subject: line. In the body put "unsubscribe when" to STOP. To RESTART, put "subscribe when" in the e-mail instead (No quotation marks.)
------------------------------------------------------------------- Feds Want McWilliams To Die (USA Today briefly notes a federal judge refused Tuesday to allow Los Angeles writer-activist Peter McWilliams to use medical marijuana while awaiting trial on drug cultivation, trafficking and possession charges.) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 19:26:25 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: Feds Want McWilliams To Die Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David Hadorn (email@example.com) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: USA Today (US) Copyright: 1999 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Address: 1000 Wilson Blvd., Arlington VA 22229 Fax: (703) 247-3108 Website: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nfront.htm Note: Subj: line title by editor NATIONLINE - Medical Marijuana: A federal judge refused Tuesday to allow a Los Angeles writer-activist with AIDS to use medical marijuana while awaiting trial on drug cultivation, trafficking and possession charges. Peter McWilliams said the ruling is a death sentence for him and he will appeal. Although California voters approved marijuana for medical uses in l996, its use for any purpose remains a federal crime.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Judge Denies AIDS Patient's Request For Marijuana (The Los Angeles Times version) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 17:13:57 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: MMJ: Judge Denies Aids Patient's Request For Marijuana Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: March 10, 1999 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Copyright: 1999 Los Angeles Times. Contact: email@example.com Fax: (213) 237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Forum: http://www.latimes.com/HOME/DISCUSS/ JUDGE DENIES AIDS PATIENT'S REQUEST FOR MARIJUANA While sympathetic to his medical plight, a federal judge has denied Peter McWilliams' request for permission to smoke pot while awaiting trial on marijuana conspiracy charges. McWilliams, a writer and publisher who has AIDS, says that he needs marijuana to keep from vomiting the powerful antiviral drugs he must take each day. Last year, a federal magistrate forbade him to smoke pot as a condition of his bail, an order that McWilliams calls a virtual death decree. In a written opinion released Tuesday, U.S. District Judge George H. King refused to alter McWilliams' bail conditions. He said he is not empowered to grant "what amounts to a license to violate federal law." Despite California voters' passage of Proposition 215 legalizing the medical use of marijuana, federal law still makes possession and ingestion of marijuana a crime. "We do not mean to express indifference to defendant's situation," King wrote, adding that he hopes McWilliams and his physician can come up with another treatment program within the law. McWilliams' lawyer, Thomas Ballanco, said he plans to appeal King's ruling to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. McWilliams, who lives in Laurel Canyon, was indicted in July on nine counts of conspiring to grow, possess and distribute marijuana. He is a friend and supporter of medical marijuana advocate Todd McCormick, who is awaiting trial on charges of growing 4,000 marijuana plants at a rented BelAir home.
------------------------------------------------------------------- State Reversing Stand On Medicinal Pot (The Los Angeles Times claims California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, who so far has failed to lift a finger to stop the persecution of patients protected by Proposition 215, is finally going to do something.) Date: Thu, 11 Mar 1999 19:55:30 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: MMJ: State Reversing Stand On Medicinal Pot Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David Hadorn (firstname.lastname@example.org) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: email@example.com Fax: (213) 237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Forum: http://www.latimes.com/HOME/DISCUSS/ Copyright: 1999 Los Angeles Times. Author: MARY CURTIUS, Los Angeles Times STATE REVERSING STAND ON MEDICINAL POT SAN FRANCISCO -- Reversing his predecessor's approach to the medicinal-marijuana initiative passed in 1996, California Attorney General Bill Lockyer has told law enforcement officials and marijuana advocates who have fought each other for years to make the law work. Since February, police chiefs, sheriffs, narcotics officers and district attorneys have been discussing with cannabis center operators and medicinal-marijuana advocates the fine points of how best to distribute marijuana and protect users from prosecution. To nearly everyone's surprise, the longtime opponents have found common ground. ``There's kind of an armistice,'' said Scott Imler, director of the Los Angeles Cannabis Resource Center in West Hollywood, the largest marijuana center in the state that is still functioning. ``Everybody seems genuinely interested in trying to implement Proposition 215 in a responsible way. It is an exciting and vital process.'' Christy McCampbell, president of the California Narcotics Officers Association, echoed Imler's assessment. ``We are all just trying to reach common ground on how to deal with an extremely complex issue,'' said McCampbell, whose organization represents 7,000 narcotics officers across the state and came out against Proposition 215 during the 1996 campaign. Difficult task ahead What remains to be seen is whether the task force formed by Lockyer can devise ways to make the law work that will win Gov. Gray Davis' support and not bring down the wrath of the federal government. Last year, the U.S. Justice Department won a court order shutting most of the state's cannabis clubs on the basis that federal law -- which says it is illegal to possess, sell or distribute marijuana -- supersedes state law. It could not immediately be determined whether officials in San Jose, Oakland and other Bay Area cities are having similar conversations with medicinal-marijuana proponents. The Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative was shut down in October by a federal judge. The Santa Clara County Medical Cannabis Center in San Jose was closed after police raided the center seeking information against Peter Baez, one of its founders. Baez is awaiting trial on charges he sold marijuana to people without doctors' consent, among other charges. The Justice Department is skeptical of the work Lockyer's medicinal-marijuana task force is doing but, for now, has no comment on its efforts. ``They are trying to implement a marijuana statute that the Department of Justice and the federal government believes to be illegal and unconstitutional,'' said one department source, speaking on condition of anonymity. Lockyer himself concedes that whatever recommendations his committee comes up with may not be fully implemented unless and until the federal government reclassifies marijuana as a drug with some therapeutic use. ``There are those who believe that the federal government will ignore a well-regulated state system,'' Lockyer said in an interview, ``but I haven't seen any evidence of that yet.'' Davis has said that he voted against Proposition 215, but so far, he has made no public comment on Lockyer's efforts. The attorney general said he doesn't know whether the governor will support the task force's recommendations. A Davis spokesman did not return phone calls seeking comment Tuesday. Marijuana is smoked or ingested by people suffering a variety of illnesses, including cancer, AIDS and spastic muscle conditions. Some doctors and patients say the drug quells nausea, eases pain and restores appetite. Among the options the committee is considering is a proposal for a statewide registry of medicinal-marijuana patients. The state Department of Health Services would create the registry and issue identification cards to medicinal-marijuana users. The cards would indicate to local law enforcement officials that the bearer was using medicinal marijuana with a doctor's recommendation. Photo ID system The Northern California town of Arcata employs such a system. Police Chief Mel Brown has issued about 100 identification cards to city residents who have met with him and given him their doctors' names. After checking with the doctors, Brown said, he issued photo-identification cards bearing his signature. ``It keeps me from paying my officers overtime to show up in court, it keeps these people from being arrested, it keeps patients and doctors from being dragged into court,'' said Brown, who also is serving on Lockyer's task force. Proposition 215 allows patients who need marijuana to treat pain or ease other symptoms of a variety of illnesses to use it, with a doctor's recommendation. But then-Attorney General Dan Lungren and the federal government took a dim view of the law when it passed three years ago, charging that it was a ploy to legalize a federally banned substance. Attorney general's `duty' Lockyer said the policy change is a priority because ``the attorney general has a duty to try to effectuate the people's will. And I voted for Prop. 215. ``Having watched my mom die of leukemia when she was 50 and a little sister die of leukemia when she was 39, it just always seemed odd to me that a doctor could give them morphine but couldn't give them marijuana.'' Lockyer said he also will lobby the federal government to reclassify the drug so that physicians can legally prescribe it. He is scheduled to attend a national conference of attorneys general in Washington this month. Justice Department spokesman Brian Steel said he had no comment on Lockyer's new approach. He said the department currently is reviewing medicinal-marijuana laws passed in November in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Arizona. The federal government is due to release a report next Wednesday by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences on whether there is any medicinal value to smoking or ingesting marijuana.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Lockyer Pushing Ways To Make Pot Law Work (A slightly different version of the Los Angeles Times story, apparently from a different edition) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 17:14:22 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: MMJ: Lockyer Pushing Ways To Make Pot Law Work Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: March 10, 1999 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Copyright: 1999 Los Angeles Times. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Fax: (213) 237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Forum: http://www.latimes.com/HOME/DISCUSS/ Author: Mary Curtius, Times Staff Writer LOCKYER PUSHING WAYS TO MAKE POT LAW WORK Health: Authorities, backers of Prop. 215 work together on system to distribute marijuana for medical purposes. SAN FRANCISCO Reversing his predecessor's approach to the medical marijuana initiative passed by voters in 1996, state Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer has told law enforcement officials and marijuana advocates who have fought each other for years to make the law work. Since February, police chiefs, sheriffs, narcotics officers and district attorneys have been discussing with cannabis center operators and medical marijuana advocates the fine points of how best to distribute marijuana and protect users from prosecution. To nearly everyone's surprise, the longtime opponents, now working on a task force together, have found common ground. "There's kind of an armistice," said Scott Imler, director of the Los Angeles Cannabis Resource Center in West Hollywood, the largest marijuana center in the state that is still functioning. "Everybody seems genuinely interested in trying to implement Proposition 215 in a responsible way. It is an exciting and vital process." Christy McCampbell, president of the California Narcotics Officers Assn., echoed Imler's assessment. "We are all just trying to reach common ground on how to deal with an extremely complex issue," said McCampbell, whose organization represents 7,000 narcotics officers across the state and opposed Proposition 215 during the 1996 campaign. What remains to be seen is whether the group can devise ways to make the law work that will win Gov. Gray Davis' support and not bring down the wrath of the federal government. Last year, the U.S. Justice Department won a court order shutting most of the state's cannabis clubs on the basis that federal lawwhich says it is illegal to possess, sell or distribute marijuanasupersedes state law. The Justice Department is skeptical of the work Lockyer's medical marijuana task force is doing, but for now has no comment on its efforts. "They are trying to implement a marijuana statute that the Department of Justice and the federal government believe to be illegal and unconstitutional," said one department source, speaking on condition of anonymity. Lockyer himself concedes that whatever recommendations his task force makes may not be fully implemented unless and until the federal government reclassifies marijuana as a drug with some therapeutic use. "There are those who believe that the federal government will ignore a wellregulated state system," Lockyer said, "but I haven't seen any evidence of that yet." Davis has said that he voted against Proposition 215, but so far has made no public comment on Lockyer's efforts. The attorney general said he doesn't know whether the governor will support the task force's recommendations. Michael Bustamante, spokesman for Davis, said that the governor "respects the decision of voters with issues that come before the electorate, and clearly voters have spoken as it relates to the law." Marijuana is smoked or ingested by people suffering a variety of ailmentsincluding cancer, AIDS and spastic muscle conditions. Some doctors and patients say the drug quells nausea, eases pain and restores appetite. Among the options the task force is considering is a proposal for a statewide registry of medical marijuana patients. The state Department of Health Services would create the registry and issue identification cards to medical marijuana users. The cards would indicate to local law enforcement officials that the bearer was using medical marijuana with a doctor's recommendation. The tiny Northern California town of Arcata employs such a system. Police Chief Mel Brown has issued about 100 identification cards to city residents who have met with him and given him their doctors' names. After checking with the doctors, Brown said, he issued photoidentification cards bearing his signature. "It keeps me from paying my officers overtime to show up in court, it keeps these people from being arrested, it keeps patients and doctors from being dragged into court," said Brown, who also is serving on Lockyer's medical marijuana task force. Proposition 215 allows patients who need marijuana to treat pain or ease other symptoms of a variety of illnesses to use it, with a doctor's recommendation. But thenAtty. Gen. Dan Lungren and the federal government took a dim view of the law when it passed three years ago, charging that it was a ploy to legalize a federally banned substance. Lungren personallyand successfullycrusaded to shut down the state's largest club, operated in San Francisco by Proposition 215 author Dennis Peron. And Lungren welcomed the Justice Department's assault on cannabis clubs in federal court. By October, there was only one largescale marijuana distribution center still operating in California: Imler's, which serves more than 500 people. The other clubs had been shut by the courts, but Imler's lowkey operation, his cooperation with local law enforcement and his tight screening procedures kept him out of trouble. Medical marijuana users and providers had reverted to growing plants individually or buying the drug on the streets. Days after he was sworn in, Lockyer said one of his top 10 law enforcement priorities was the implementation of Proposition 215. He formed the task forcechaired by state Sen. John Vasconcellos (DSanta Clara) and Santa Clara County Dist. Atty. George Kennedyin January and charged it with finding ways to safely provide patients with medical marijuana. "Prop. 215 has gaps and ambiguities that make it difficult to implement," Lockyer said. "It can be amended, just like any other law. I would hope that the task force agrees on clarifying language that would provide more medical supervision of the program and answer local law enforcement's desire to have clear rules." Amendments would require a twothirds vote of the Legislature, but not a new ballot initiative. Lockyer said the policy change is a priority because "the attorney general has a duty to try to effectuate the people's will. And I voted for Prop. 215. "Having watched my mom die of leukemia when she was 50 and a little sister die of leukemia when she was 39, it just always seemed odd to me that a doctor could give them morphine but couldn't give them marijuana." Lockyer said he also will lobby the federal government to reclassify the drug so that physicians can legally prescribe it. He is scheduled to attend a national conference of attorneys general in Washington this month. Justice Department spokesman Brian Steel said he had no comment on Lockyer's approach. He said the department is reviewing medical marijuana laws passed in November in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Arizona. The federal government is set to release a report March 17, by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, on whether there is any medicinal value to smoking or ingesting marijuana. The longawaited reportwhich surveys past research efforts and includes testimony from patients and doctorsis expected to say that there may be some medical benefits to some patients, but more research is needed. Some medical marijuana advocates see it as a first step toward federal reclassifying of the drug. In the meantime, they are applauding Lockyer for not waiting for a change in federal policy. "Certainly, the change from the Wilson administration is dramatic," said Bill Zimmerman, executive director of Americans for Medical Rights and author of "Is Marijuana the Right Medicine for You?" The nonprofit organization campaigned for passage of Proposition 215 and has spearheaded medical marijuana campaigns in other states. Zimmerman says he met with Lungren after the proposition passed, "and I felt a little bit like Lucifer in that office." Now, he said, "patients and advocates feel they can get a hearing instead of having doors slammed in their faces." Zimmerman, who serves on the task force, says that many of the law enforcement officials who are participating introduced themselves at the first session by saying they had voted against the proposition but now were committed to making the law work. "My own personal philosophy isn't relevant," said Kennedy, the Santa Clara district attorney and cochairman of the task force. "The law passed overwhelmingly. It doesn't make any difference what my views are." Karyn Sinunu, Kennedy's deputy and chief of Santa Clara County's narcotics unit, also serves on the task force, as does attorney Gerald Uelmen, who has represented cannabis clubs and their operators. Uelmen and Sinunu debate legal issues at the meetings, then square off in Santa Clara Superior Court, where Uelmen is representing a cannabis club operator charged with seven felonies. "I don't think it is particularly awkward," Uelmen said of serving with his court opponent. "We have a very different view of the prosecution of Peter Baez, but we're in basic agreement that medical marijuana is a good idea and that we should do what we can to implement it." A spokesman for Vasconcellos said the senator expects the panel to come up with recommendations by the end of April. "The primary goal of the senator is to ease the distribution crisis that occurred on Lungren's watch," said Rand Martin, Vasconcellos' chief of staff. "Nobody in their right mind can argue that voters thought that people with cancer were going to have to go out on the street and buy their drugs from dealers in dark alleys."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Monitoring Mary Jane - The Difficulty In Regulating Medicinal Pot (The Pacific Sun, in California, discusses the struggle to implement Proposition 215 in Marin and Sonoma counties and California at large.) Date: Sat, 20 Mar 1999 23:34:55 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: Monitoring Mary Jane Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jo-D Harrison Dunbar Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: Pacific Sun (CA) Section: UpFront Copyright: 1999 Pacific Sun Publishing Co., Inc. Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.pacificsun.com/ Author: Bill Meagher and Peter Seidman MONITORING MARY JANE The Difficulty In Regulating Medicinal Pot California voters approved Proposition 215 back in November 1996, but law enforcement personnel and district attorneys are still trying to determine how to administer the legal use of marijuana for medical treatment. In Marin, District Attorney Paula Kamena organized a committee of local law enforcement officials last month to tackle the dicey task of figuring out exactly how much pot is legitimate for medical patients to grow and possess. In Sonoma, District Attorney Mike Mullins and the Sonoma Medical Association got together and produced a program that allows medical patients to have their conditions reviewed by a panel of doctors, which then approves the patients' use of marijuana, consistent with Prop 215 guidelines and protocols. In the Sonoma scenario, patients who receive authorization from the medical panel can notify the district attorney, who then notifies law enforcement officials that under county policy the patients have a legitimate need for pot and are allowed to cultivate and possess marijuana. Developing guidelines to determine how much marijuana patients should be allowed to cultivate and possess, and exactly how patients should qualify to cultivate and possess the drug, are two major headaches Proposition 215 has triggered due to its vague wording. Newly elected Attorney General Bill Lockyer has formed a statewide committee of law enforcement personnel to tackle the same issues that Marin and Sonoma currently are wrestling with. Mullins and Tiburon Police Chief Pete Hurley serve on that committee. Marin's efforts to deal with the matter made the rounds in Sacramento; Hurley showed the attorney general a memo received from the Marin district attorney regarding the county's efforts to find an equitable way to deal with Prop. 215. The memo underscored for Lockyer the need to develop medical marijuana guidelines. "I had no idea the internal memo would end up being circulated in Sac- ramento," says Kamena. "The memo was trying to set up some guidelines on how law enforcement officers should handle situations involving medical marijuana, and how we would look at things here in the office." Kamena, Mullins and other district attorneys across the state have been left to their own devices when deciding whether to prosecute medical pot cases, in large part because former Governor Pete Wilson and former Attorney General Dan Lungren opposed the passage and implementation of Prop. 215, also known as the medical marijuana initiative. Rather than deal with the formation of guidelines, Lungren and Wilson sidestepped the whole issue while they finished their terms. The committee that Marin District Attorney Kamena set up last month includes Tiburon Police Chief Hurley, Assistant Marin District Attorney Ed Berberian, Rob Nelson from the Marin Drug Task Force and officer Mark Sooy from the California Highway Patrol. In addition to these members, the committee has an open seat filled by various members of the Marin County Department of Health and Human Services. The primary focus of the committee is to set up practical guidelines that the district attorney's staff and cops on the street can use to determine whether to prosecute cases - or to give them a pass. "We need to get some sort of idea on how many plants a patient can have, and even what kind of shape the plants are in," Kamena says. "For instance, there is a big dif-ference between finding five plants in a home that are small and barely hanging on, and finding five plants under grow lights that are 7 feet tall." Darcie McKay runs Marin RX, a cooperative marijuana growing operation that supplies patients in Marin with medical marijuana. "Deciding how much is hard," she says, "because Prop 215 doesn't say. If you say a patient can only have an ounce, then [he or she has] to be growing that next ounce all the time. And one patient might need more than another patient with similar symptoms. And there are people who simply can't grow it themselves and must buy it instead. Putting limits on all this will make everything more complicated." Don't get McKay wrong. She applauds Kamena's efforts. "Any step toward a common-sense decision is good," she says. "I've talked in the past with Paula, and I have been very heartened, the wider picture regarding the future of Prop 215 is not nearly as clear. After the law passed, clinics opened in many Bay Area cities and began supplying medical mari-juana that the state said was legal. But Prop 215 still contradicts federal law, which states that pot is a dangerous drug - and an illegal one under federal drug statues. The United States Drug Enforcement Agency has moved to shut down some of the pot clinics in the Bay Area, but not all of them. The Marin Alliance in Fairfax has a case pending against it for selling pot to undercover agents(even though the agents allegedly had documentation that authorized use of medical marijuana). The concern that that Alliance and(to a lesser extent) Marin RX have about whether the feds are ready to unleash the full power of the U.S. Attorney General's Office on them is justified, according to Berberian. Because no matter what guidelines county committees and district attorney's offices decided to implement, "The people who have exposure are the people who have always had exposure under Prop 215, the patients." Berberian says. That's because federal drug laws always will supersede local law, and even if the state and the counties set policies regarding the amount of marijuana patients may possess, if federal agents arrest a patient, the local policy will make no difference. McKay says that from a practical perspective, the federal drug enforcement bureaucracy will have little interest in going after patients who grow or possess only enough pot for themselves. But, she adds, just the fear of a federal prosecution can weigh heavily on someone battling a life threatening disease. "I deal with very sick people," McKay says, "and the stress they have over worrying about getting their medicine or being arrested for growing is something that really hurts them. While Prop 215 was very poorly written, the intent is clear: to put medical marijuana in the hands of those who are ill and need it." McKay says a bill authored by Democratic Congressman Barney Frank would protect medical marijuana patients in California, and any other state whose voters approve measures similar to Prop 215. Frank's bill would pro-hibit federal law enforcement personnel from prosecuting people who cul-tivate pot for the sole purpose of providing marijuana for their legit-imate medical use. But McKay and other proponents of medical marijuana know that Frank's bill has almost no chance of passage. "It's a good idea," she says, "but even his office knows it is a very long shot." Berberian remarks that although Marin has set no timeline to put a local medical marijuana policy in place, he is confident the committee's efforts will produce a finished product soon. "We want to move as quickly as we can," he says. Mullins sways members serving on the attorney general's committee hope they also will soon be able to finish work on their guidelines, which the counties then can use to create a homogeneous statewide policy toward medical marijuana.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Ex-officer gets 27-year prison term - Former cop made $10,000 in drug scam (The Houston Chronicle says Michael Lee Bogany, a Houston police officer who was fired in November, was sentenced to 27 years in prison Wednesday for stealing controlled substances from illegal dealers and then selling them to other dealers.) From: "Bob Owen@W.H.E.N." (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "_Drug Policy --" (email@example.com) Subject: TX Ex-officer gets 27-year prison term Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 20:41:26 -0800 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org March 10, 1999, 09:22 p.m. Ex-officer gets 27-year prison term Former cop made $10,000 in drug scam By STEVE BREWER Copyright 1999 Houston Chronicle An ex-Houston police officer who stole narcotics from drug dealers and then sold them to other dealers apologized Wednesday before being sentenced to 27 years in prison. Jurors in state District Judge Jan Krocker's court convicted Michael Lee Bogany of engaging in organized criminal activity late Tuesday and decided his sentence late Wednesday. Bogany, 32, must serve half of the term before he's eligible for parole. In the punishment phase of his trial, he testified that he was ashamed and would accept the jury's verdict. He did, however, express a preference for probation. Bogany testified he had acted alone when taking drugs after bogus traffic stops from February 1996 to February 1997. He also said there were times he was joined by then-Officers James E. Hubbard and Mallory O. Williams. Evidence showed Bogany made at least $10,000 from the scam, though prosecutor Mia Magness said he didn't always get the full value of the drugs. Williams was fired from HPD in November, but he has never been formally charged with any criminal wrongdoing. Bogany and Hubbard resigned from HPD. Hubbard is serving 16 years in prison for possession of cocaine with intent to deliver more than 400 grams. Bogany could have received as much as life in prison. Magness argued for at least 30 years, pointing out that Bogany only took responsibility for his crime when faced with prison time. *** When away, you can STOP and RESTART W.H.E.N.'s news clippings by sending an e-mail to email@example.com. Ignore the Subject: line. In the body put "unsubscribe when" to STOP. To RESTART, put "subscribe when" in the e-mail instead (No quotation marks.)
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Wrong Way To Fight Drug War (Boston Globe columnist Derrick Z. Jackson discovers that the White House drug czar, General Barry McCaffrey, is a flaming hypocrite. From some of the things he says, it sounds as if McCaffery wants to end the hysteria that has turned the drug war into Vietnam. But McCaffrey does not yet have the courage to put enlightenment into action. Last week, McCaffrey went to Capitol Hill to detail his $17.8 billion budget for fiscal year 2000. The portion of the budget reserved for prevention and treatment, $6 billion, is only 34 percent of federal drug-war spending, exactly the same percentage as in 1991. But the portion of the budget for domestic law enforcement, i.e. cops and incarceration, rose from 41 percent in 1991 to 52 percent in 2000. While the budget for prevention and treatment would rise by 3.6 percent, the budget for the Bureau of Prisons would go up 13 percent, 19 percent for the FBI and 50 percent for the US Attorney's office. A spokesman for McCaffrey said the prison budget is difficult to control because there has to be a place to put the people already arrested. The spokesman said McCaffrey wants more money for prevention, but the need for prisons is so great that it will take several years to see a change in funding.) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 17:28:40 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US MA: OPED: The Wrong Way To Fight Drug War Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Dick Evans) Pubdate: Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: Boston Globe (MA) Copyright: 1999 Globe Newspaper Company. Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.boston.com/globe/ Author: Derrick Z. Jackson, Globe Columnist THE WRONG WAY TO FIGHT DRUG WAR Drug czar Barry McCaffrey talks as if he gets it. This is what he is saying about the so-called war on drugs: ''We have a failed social policy and it has to be re-evaluated. Otherwise, we're going to bankrupt ourselves. Because we can't incarcerate our way out of this problem.'' ''Demand must be the priority. People's desire for drugs is what sets the drug abuse cycle in motion ... If demand reduction is the primary effort, prevention is the key. Clearly, preventing drug abuse in the first place is preferable to waiting to address the problem later with law enforcement.'' ''We have begun to shift federal spending priorities and programs ... Resources for prevention have increased 33 percent in the past two years while spending for treatment has increased by the same ratio over the last five years.'' ''Prevention is the ultimate key to reversing the upward trend in the use of drugs and empowering communities to address their drug problems.'' ''I don't think we're going to arrest our way out of this.'' This sounds as if McCaffery, director of the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy, wants to end the hysteria that has turned the drug war into Vietnam. It seems that he knows that the call for more law enforcement is as ineffective as Lyndon Johnson's orders for more troops. He seems to know that prisons are napalm, defoliating African-American men to the point where 13 percent of them cannot vote. ButMcCaffrey does not yet have the courage to put enlightenment into action. He is still calling for more troops and more napalm. Last week, McCaffrey went to Capitol Hill to detail his $17.8 billion budget for fiscal year 2000. Many studies say prevention and treatment (not to mention education and jobs) are more effective in reducing addiction and recidivism than the porous walls of interdiction or the barbed wires of incarceration. Yet the portion of the budget reserved for prevention and treatment, $6 billion, is only 34 percent of drug-war spending. That is exactly the same percentage as in 1991. So much for shifting the priorities. While McCaffrey has proposed an increase of $210 million for the programs to help Americans combat drug addiction, he has proposed an increase of $525 million for domestic and international law enforcement. While the portion of the budget for prevention has remained stagnant for a decade, the share for domestic law enforcement, i.e. cops and incarceration, rose from 41 percent in 1991 to 55 percent in 1996. The percentage in 2000 would be 52 percent. The drug war budget, which has more than quadrupled since 1988, and always with two-thirds for incarceration and interdiction and one-third for prevention, has not affected drug use or availability. A serious drug war should have resulted in limited supply and steep prices. Both the price of cocaine and heroin have dropped dramatically over the last two decades. While the budget in the drug war for prevention and treatment would rise by 3.6 percent, the budget for the Bureau of Prisons would go up 13 percent. The FBI would go up 19 percent. The budget for the US Attorney's office would go up 50 percent. While the budget for prisons will go up nearly 20 percent from 1988 to 2000, community policing, seen as a more sensitive way to reduce drug-related crime, will drop by 22 percent. A spokesman for McCaffrey said Monday that the prison budget is is difficult to control because there has to be a place to put the people already arrested. The spokesman said McCaffrey wants more money for prevention, but the need for prisons is so great that it will take several years to see a change in funding. This ignores the fact that huge percentages of people incarcerated are nonviolent, low-level users and dealers. The White House knows it could dramatically slow the need for prisons by pushing to end mandatory minimum sentences and discriminatory laws that serve more to employ prison guards than to stop drugs. McCaffrey's failed budgets and plays to hysteria are generating high-profile criticism. A series of statements where he denounced needle exchange and medical marijuana and badly exaggerated drug crime in Holland sparked a recent open letter that included signatures from Harvard University professors Henry Louis Gates Jr., Alvin Poussaint, Orlando Patterson and William Julius Wilson, and Boston University professor Glenn Loury. The letter exhorted McCaffrey to provide facts ''that could help us deal realistically and effectively with our very real problems of addiction.'' It will be hard for McCaffrey to hear them when his primary weapon in the drug war is still napalm.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Ruling on the Philadelphia Medical Marijuana Suit: We are still alive (California NORML breaks the news that U.S. District Judge Marvin Katz has allowed the class action lawsuit to proceed. A member of the legal team headed by Lawrence Elliott Hirsch summarizes Judge Katz's decision in Philadelphia.) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 21:55:07 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (Dale Gieringer) Subject: DPFCA: Ruling on the PHL Med MJ Suit: We are still alive Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com (Dale Gieringer) Organization: DrugSense http://www.drugsense.org/dpfca/ MikeCutler/Boston, here, co-counsel with brothers Galbraith and Panzer to Class Action lead counsel Hirsch. This afternoon, Judge Katz issued an intelligent 23-page decision, describing his ruling on the govt's motion to dismiss. The motion was granted (dismissing the class claims with prejudice) as to the Commerce clause, 9th am./privacy/substantive due process/ fundamental right claims and Marinol- equal protection claim. The motion to dismiss was denied, however (enabling discovery of govt evidence by the class to go forward), as to the operation and limitation (closure) of the compassionate use/IND program, which was closed in 1992 and still supplies 8 patients. Katz described the surviving claim as created by the constitutional right to equal protection of law, by the govt's creation of a class of 8 patients excepted from its criminal prohibition of possession, "but not for another group of individuals that is similarly situated [the 160+ class members]." Katz ruled that "without the development of a factual record, the court cannot say that the govt's decision to give mj to several people who are ill, and the govt's refusal to give it to the plaintiffs who are also ill, is rational as a matter of law when the plaintiffs have not had the opportunity to prove otherwise." Thus the class claim, that the closure of the compassionate use program lacked any rational basis, survives and Katz will "allow limited discovery to permit the plaintiffs to show that the decision [to close the program] was irrational under every conceivable justification [suggested by the govt]." The decision closes by stating "Where reasonable people may differ [whether effective medicine is too harmful to be legal], the court is bound to defer to the will of the legislature. The court cannot avoid noticing that the jurisdictions, that have adopted policies more congruent with those desired by the plaintiffs, have achieved such change through referenda and ballot measures rather than through the courts." I intend to discuss with brother Hirsch an effort to seek reconsideration of two of the dismissed claims: First, my pet theory that the Commerce clause permits federal regulation of any goods having an interstate market (like the food & drug administration's public health power to regulate the purity, labeling and dispensing of food and drugs), but not a federal criminal prohibition of marijuana. This claim needs no factual record, and if Katz rejects it, there is always appellate review. A stronger case can be made, however, for finding the existence of a constitutional substantive due process-fundamental right to effective pain relief, which would require the govt to present more than a mere rational basis for the patient prohibition to be sustained. That right may be reasonably inferred from the plurality decisions in the USSC right to die case (Glusckberg v. WA '97), at least as to the sub-set of class members who can prove with expert medical testimony that mj relieves their pain and restores to them a significant quality of life more effectively than any legal medication. Even if the case is not reopened as to either of the foregoing claims, Atty- team Hirsch has the opportunity to review the documents the govt must provide (discovery of whatever records there are that would demonstrate the govt's rational basis for terminating the Compassionate Use Program: The records that show why the program was terminated, including why it started and how it was operated and monitored); and it may be inferred, to also base further inquiry into the govt's evidence (including depositions of govt witnesses and experts) on those materials. By Monday, the govt must report how much longer it needs to collect and share these documents. To experts Morgan, Grinspoon, Doblin, Zeese and others with special knowledge of these matters, please contact Larry Hirsch (firstname.lastname@example.org), Bill Panzer (WGpanzer@earthlink.net) or myself (email@example.com) by Monday 15 March if possible but hopefully before the end of this month, to advise us about how the program operated, who its players were and where in the fed bureaucracy we should look for "smoking" guns. *** Dale Gieringer (415) 563-5858 // firstname.lastname@example.org 2215-R Market St. #278, San Francisco CA 94114
------------------------------------------------------------------- Nightline: Getting Straight (The second part of ABC's three-night series by Dave Marash focuses on the inadequacy of funding for treatment in U.S. drug policy. "Getting addicts to accept treatment is tough enough. Getting the treatment centers to accept the addicts can be even tougher.") Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 10:13:37 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US: Part 2 of 3 - Nightline: Getting Straight Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Marcus/Mermelstein Family (email@example.com) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 Source: ABC News Copyright: 1998 ABCNEWS and Starwave Corporation. Website: http://www.abcnews.go.com/onair/nightline/transcripts/nl990310_trans.html GETTING STRAIGHT, PART II TED KOPPEL We love the image of declaring war on things we hate and sometimes, as in the war on crime, it's an appropriate image. Declaring war on drugs and drug addiction, on the other hand, is a little more complex. As you may have heard on this program last night, the most warlike approach-destroying drug production overseas-is also the most expensive. Intercepting drug shipments at the US border is cheaper, but also very costly. Law enforcement on the streets of our towns and cities is a more efficient way of keeping drugs out of the hands of our addicts. But the most efficient way by far, the cheapest, the best, the most enduring way to reduce drug addiction in America is through drug treatment. It is also the least sexy, the most difficult to sell politically to the taxpaying public. So we don't have enough drug treatment centers. They tend to be insufficiently funded so that a lot of our addicts are rushed through programs that are too short to be effective and all of this, of course, assumes that there are enough trained, dedicated people around to convince addicts that treatment is what they need. Which brings us to Rafael Flores, who works from eight to four as an intake counselor for the drug treatment clinic at Bronx Lebanon Hospital in New York. Although it's not what he does on the job that makes Rafael so interesting. It's what he feels compelled to do on his own time. Nightline Correspondent Dave Marash has his remarkable story. DAVE MARASH, ABCNEWS (VO) It's an hour before first light and already a group of addicts is waiting in the vestibule of Beth Israel Hospital. For Rafael Flores, fisher for souls, Beth Israel is like the Gulf Stream. RAFAEL FLORES I like finding people and offering them services. It's as simple as that. People that are hurting and often there's drug addicts, alcoholics, and I really like reaching out to people. I'm a street worker. I've been doing it for 28 years and what I do is get people into detox. DAVE MARASH (VO) To be cleansed of their drugs or alcohol, people start arriving as early as 2:00 AM for a detox unit that doesn't open until 7:30. They know that many mornings not everyone in the vestibule makes it to the unit. In New York City, as in the United States, just one in four addicts seeking treatment gets it. For those who don't get it, there's Rafael. RAFAEL FLORES So like if there's any problems where you may not be able to get in, you know, I could help you get into a detox and a rehab. DAVE MARASH (VO) And mere detoxification without rehabilitation and then long-term therapy is something Rafael says just doesn't work. He'll accept nothing less than a commitment to all three. RAFAEL FLORES Have you ever been at Beth Israel before? 1ST SUBSTANCE ABUSER Yes. RAFAEL FLORES OK, so when was the last time you were here? 1ST SUBSTANCE ABUSER Last year. RAFAEL FLORES Last year? OK. The, have you ever tried a long-term program before? 1ST SUBSTANCE ABUSER No, no. RAFAEL FLORES He's been in detox six times. He was never referred to a next level of treatment. There are those people that go into detox to clean themselves out but we have perfect opportunity to refer them to a rehab for like say 28 days or to a long-term program directly from the facility. There are many people, many agencies will not work with street addicts per se. This is the population that I'm looking for. This is the population that we need to make an extra effort to reach. DAVE MARASH (VO) This population, says one of New York's top experts on drug treatment, requires the constant care and long haul philosophy that Rafael espouses. DR JEFFREY FOOTE, ST. LUKE'S ROOSEVELT HOSPITAL You're talking about learning a life as opposed to going back to a former life that you may have had. In that case, you need time and you need protection and that's what a long-term in-patient facility can offer you in a perfect world. RAFAEL FLORES You'll go in and you'll come out really quick and the counselors may not be able to arrange long-term treatment from here. I know I will be able to. DAVE MARASH (VO) If you don't get in this morning, call me, says Rafael. And if you do get into detox, call me when you get out. RAFAEL FLORES If you make the right decision and say let me try this or let me try that, let me do something a little different, it's possible. It's possible to be clean. It's possible to wake up and not have to need a drink. DAVE MARASH (VO) With those final words of reassurance, Rafael's new client enters the hospital. As we head uptown from Beth Israel, Rafael is pleased. This street angel has accomplished his mission. He has offered service and believes it will be accepted. RAFAEL FLORES This client is motivated. He came here because he wants to stop drinking, he wants to stop being in the streets. He told me that he would like to learn how to walk and keep his head up high. DAVE MARASH Rafael Flores, Ralph to his friends, learned his trade here. Upstairs across the street there used to be an office called Hotline Cares. Ralph ran the office for more than 20 years and saved hundreds of his East Harlem neighbors from addiction. Then, the hot line went bust. Ralph had messed up on his paperwork, offended some funders and even some of his fellow workers so that today he freelances his mission on the streets and at a place called Sister's. RAFAEL FLORES We're going to go to what I call Sister's house. This is a nun that has lived for the past 24 years, she has her own tenement apartment in East Harlem and she provides a great deal of services to people that are hurting, people from the streets. So I'm always checking in with her to find out if anyone requires my services and we just work together and try to hook it up. The place would not win an award for decoration, but it has a lot of heart. Is sister in? Look who's there! Look who's there! 2ND SUBSTANCE ABUSER Oh, thank you Jesus. It's been a long time. RAFAEL FLORES It's so good seeing you. I know, it has been a couple, at least two years, right? 2ND SUBSTANCE ABUSER A little more than two years. RAFAEL FLORES A little more than two years since I last worked with you. 2ND SUBSTANCE ABUSER Yeah. You're the one that gave me a hard time. RAFAEL FLORES Yeah. 2ND SUBSTANCE ABUSER But you saw in me what I didn't understand in myself. RAFAEL FLORES And what do you think that was? 2ND SUBSTANCE ABUSER Tough love. What you gave me was tough love. DAVE MARASH (VO) Little does Rafael suspect what challenges await him at Sister's, challenges to his toughness and to his ability to love. RAFAEL FLORES OK, but she told me that maybe I want to work with one or two persons. She wanted me to talk to you. CATHY ORTIZ Yeah. RAFAEL FLORES OK. I'm glad you're here. I'm really glad you're here. CATHY ORTIZ OK. TED KOPPEL When Dave Marash continues, Rafael's next challenge, a mother of eight. (Commercial Break) MICHAEL MASSING The overall number of people using drugs has declined since the mid-'80s. If you look at the number of people who used cocaine, let's say, at all on an annual basis, it has gone down sharply. But the hard-core user population, those who are chronically using and abusing heroin, cocaine, crack and methamphetamine has remained stubbornly high. DAVE MARASH (VO) Michael Massing, author of The Fix, introduced us to Rafael Flores and to the world of America's four million hard core junkies. MICHAEL MASSING They are the ones who remain the core of the problem because they're the ones committing crime, they're the ones contracting AIDS, they're the ones who are neglecting and abusing their children. RAFAEL FLORES Sister told you I was coming. CATHY ORTIZ Sister told you I where I was coming and she wanted to know more exactly my problem and drug. I'm trying to get myself together. RAFAEL FLORES OK, tell me what you're dealing with, you know, the substance. CATHY ORTIZ OK, I'm dealing-crack, heroin, methadone. RAFAEL FLORES OK. CATHY ORTIZ I'm on a methadone program. DAVE MARASH (VO) Cathy Ortiz, still in her forties, a junkie more than half her life. When Cathy started on drugs, the Nixon administration was putting two thirds of its drug control budget into treatment programs. Today, that proportion has been reversed and twice as much money goes to law enforcement, to border control and to destroying crops in foreign fields as goes to drug treatment. RAFAEL FLORES When did you come out of the detox? CATHY ORTIZ I came out a week and a half ago. RAFAEL FLORES OK. CATHY ORTIZ And I've been doing pretty good. RAFAEL FLORES OK, so what we're talking about is a rehab=8A CATHY ORTIZ Struggle. RAFAEL FLORES A rehab? CATHY ORTIZ Yeah, right. RAFAEL FLORES OK. Tell me the issues that you want to deal with. What do you want? CATHY ORTIZ I want to get my life back together. RAFAEL FLORES OK, what does that mean for you? CATHY ORTIZ I want to get my kids. RAFAEL FLORES OK. CATHY ORTIZ And I want to live in my apartment with my kids. RAFAEL FLORES In the past year how many detoxes have you been in? CATHY ORTIZ I've been in about seven. RAFAEL FLORES OK. Tell me-and we're going to get you in, but tell me what is it that's motivating you this time? Why do you think it might work this time or what decisions are you ready to make this time? CATHY ORTIZ Because I'm just tired. I'm just tired. Being tired of doing the same things over and over and over again. RAFAEL FLORES How do I know it's possible to be clean and to learn how to live without substance? CATHY ORTIZ Exactly. RAFAEL FLORES You know, and that has to be difficult. CATHY ORTIZ It's a struggle every day. RAFAEL FLORES That has to be difficult. CATHY ORTIZ It's a struggle every day. RAFAEL FLORES OK. We're going to start off with a rehab. CATHY ORTIZ All right. RAFAEL FLORES I will not place you in a rehab unless you commit to a long-term program, OK? CATHY ORTIZ OK. RAFAEL FLORES Do you have your Medicaid? CATHY ORTIZ Yeah. RAFAEL FLORES Let's get on the phone. Listen, I kind of work a little strange. It may happen even today. DAVE MARASH (VO) One thing that may complicate Rafael's attempts to book Cathy into rehab is the fact that she takes regular doses of methadone to help her control her heroin addiction. Many drug-free facilities won't accept people on methadone maintenance. But before Rafael can even get to the telephone, he's interrupted by an old friend and his second new client. RAFAEL FLORES Sister, I'm meeting with Cathy =8A SISTER Right. RAFAEL FLORES She's ready to make a move. Hi, John. JOHN CURTIS How you doing? SISTER He's making a move, too. RAFAEL FLORES Could I be of any help? JOHN CURTIS No. I'm out of New York, period. RAFAEL FLORES You're what? JOHN CURTIS I'm out of New York, period. DAVE MARASH (VO) John Curtis has fouled East Harlem's streets for decades with drugs bought and sold, with lives laid waste, his teenage son shot to death before his eyes, his two-year-old son in the process of being taken from him and his wife dying of drugs and AIDS. Sister has given him traveling money and a bus ticket west. RAFAEL FLORES What did you want to say? SISTER The thing that works very often best for us is to just get away from this whole neighborhood, the whole scene. RAFAEL FLORES Let him leave in five days. OK, I'll go along with that if you let me get him in today, that way you'll get some basic medical services that you could appreciate and be healthier when you do leave. You'll still leave. You keep the ticket. But at least let me do my thing. JOHN CURTIS Well, I'll let you, I want you to do your thing. Hook me up. DAVE MARASH (VO) Rafael's thing is to get John admitted to detox, the first stage of drug treatment. RAFAEL FLORES I think John must have, his substance abuse history has affected him, his ability to be rational even on a basic level. I think John wants to die. That's your what? JOHN CURTIS That's for my degree, we have a permanent ID I got my Medicaid card. DAVE MARASH (VO) As John Curtis pulls out his Medicaid card, he's reminded of a complication. RAFAEL FLORES Is your Medicaid restricted? DAVE MARASH (VO) John's Medicaid account has been assigned to an HMO, Metro Plus, with a short list of treatment facilities it will use. The last one they sent John to set up what can be for him and other addicts a recurring roadblock to treatment-the requirement that he accept treatment for alcoholism as well as his drug addiction. JOHN CURTIS I don't drink enough. You know, I haven't drank in 14 years. I had to lie because they won't take you on just drugs alone. You have to have alcohol and drugs or they won't accept you. So I said yeah, I just drank yesterday. DAVE MARASH You talk to a lot of people who are saying I want help but they don't really want help. RAFAEL FLORES Right. DAVE MARASH What tells you that these two are ready? RAFAEL FLORES When they get to the facility. DAVE MARASH So right now we're still guessing? RAFAEL FLORES We're still guessing. TED KOPPEL Getting addicts to accept treatment is tough enough. Getting the treatment centers to accept the addicts can be even tougher. That part of the story, when we come back. (Commercial Break) DR DENI CARISE, TREATMENT RESEARCH INSTITUTE Now, not only are there more people on a wait list for the government programs, the wait lists are longer. DAVE MARASH So, in a sense, the neediest cases are the ones who go untreated longest? DR. DENI CARISE Right. That's true and what's so important about that is that a lot of research has shown that when somebody's ready for treatment and they want treatment, if they don't get it right away the chances of them continuing and waiting and getting into treatment later really diminish. DAVE MARASH (VO) These are the conditions that face Rafael as he starts phoning for John Curtis. RAFAEL FLORES Joe, this is Rafael. I want to beep you. I have a client here. I'm asking for a detox scholarship. DAVE MARASH (VO) Rafael is sure that John's HMO will refuse to pay for most of the programs that he can access so he's trying to get John a scholarship for free care. Where's John, asks Rafael, pausing from his non-stop dialing? SISTER John will be with you in a little while. He was, he's crying all right? He's a little upset. RAFAEL FLORES OK, but where is he because I don't want to lose him. SISTER No, he's not going nowhere. RAFAEL FLORES Hello? Give me a scholarship, I'll give you the next five Medicaids I get. Thank you. Please call me at Sister's. Thanks. That's the negotiation. If they give me this one scholarship, I'll give them the next five clients I receive, the next five clients that have insurance. DAVE MARASH (VO) Before phoning up John's next hope, Rafael checks up on his missing client. John was last reported in the local laundromat, reputedly a place an addict can make a drug connection. RAFAEL FLORES I'm just looking for someone. Sister, I temporarily lost John. SISTER Well, somebody told me he was in here. RAFAEL FLORES Yeah. Well, we searched the place and he's not here. Cathy said that he might be in some woman's apartment? DAVE MARASH (VO) Rafael returns to the phone and soon gets good news. CATHY ORTIZ Some woman is here. It gotta be a woman. RAFAEL FLORES Who? CATHY ORTIZ John. RAFAEL FLORES Very good, girl. CATHY ORTIZ OK. I'm getting my clothes. I told you I'm working. RAFAEL FLORES Every time I meet with people I'm hoping that they might be ready. I'm assuming that today is going to be a good day for them and they might be ready today and it's my job to be ready when they are. DAVE MARASH (VO) And, says Rafael, he knew exactly when Cathy Ortiz was ready. RAFAEL FLORES I was working with her doing some intake and she said look, Ralph, I have to go to the laundromat. I'll be right back. I lose most people at that point. The fact that she came back and told me, "I'm back," she was telling me a lot. She was telling me I'm ready, let's go. DAVE MARASH (VO) Once again, Cathy's case moves to the top of Rafael's agenda. RAFAEL FLORES I wonder if I might please be able to speak to an intake worker regarding a possible admission for a client into your rehab. As soon as possible, today or tomorrow. No beds until next week? DAVE MARASH (VO) In New York City, the demand for treatment far exceeds the supply of beds. So far, Rafael has been unable to place either of his two new clients. RAFAEL FLORES Yes, but if I have to wait more than 24 hours, I'm going to lose her. DAVE MARASH (VO) Meanwhile, John's HMO's veto power has stymied Rafael's attempts to find him treatment. But Rafael has a plan for John. First he'll put him into a city crisis center, which will then send him on to detox at a hospital on Staten Island. RAFAEL FLORES So why don't I get him down there at five o'clock? OK. I'll do that. Now, would your worker open the door for us? I mean I'll be there with him. The best we were able to do is get him into the crisis center tomorrow morning at five o'clock. We pick him up, we take him there, but they want him there at five o'clock on the morning. So we'll be there. DAVE MARASH Now, who's going to keep an eye and a leash on him between now and 5:00 AM? RAFAEL FLORES Sister. That's the reality cause we can't chain him. Hi, my name is Rafael Flores and I have a client that was in your rehab about four and a half months ago and she needs to reenter into your rehab. DAVE MARASH (VO) Now it's back to Cathy's case, which also has its absurdities. Cathy is rejected by Beth Israel because her last attempt at rehab ended less than six months ago. RAFAEL FLORES Would you consider making an exception, please? She's highly motivated. She's been out of your rehab. She left in good standing. She's been out of your rehab for four and a half months. She has Medicaid. You have beds. Could we work out something? I would say we have a shot. I would say we have a shot. If we don't, if it doesn't work, then we get the next one, but we get your paperwork tomorrow. CATHY ORTIZ OK. RAFAEL FLORES So it's a little juggling but don't punk out on me. CATHY ORTIZ No, I'm not. I'm not. RAFAEL FLORES Stay with me. CATHY ORTIZ Sister knows I'm a fighter. DAVE MARASH (VO) Quite a day's work. Rafael has one yes for John and a maybe for treatment for Cathy. RAFAEL FLORES They both are going to try to support each other for the tonight and tonight is a critical night. They need to stay alive in order to live, yeah. TED KOPPEL I'll tell you about tomorrow night's broadcast when I come back, in a moment. (Commercial Break) TED KOPPEL Tomorrow, will John and Cathy make it through their first night clean and sober and will they get into a treatment program? Getting straight, the final report tomorrow. That's our report for tonight. I'm Ted Koppel in Washington. For all of us here at ABCNEWS, good night. *** [link to Part 3, broadcast the next evening.] [link to Part 1, broadcast the previous evening.]
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pot Charges Higher Than Ever, Even Police Call For Softer Law (The London Free Press, in Ontario, says marijuana prohibition has become the leading cause of drug-related criminal charges in the 1990s, despite growing ambivalence about whether the weed should remain illegal. Figures from the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, released yesterday by Statistics Canada, indicate the overall number of offences hasn't changed much since 1983. But marijuana-related charges accounted for 72 per cent of the total in 1997, compared with 58 per cent in 1991. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police is against "legalization," but wants Ottawa to look at decriminalization in some circumstances. Barry King, the police chief in Brockville, said officers are getting fired for using their discretion and Ottawa has to take the lead on giving police the option of letting minor drug offenders go.) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 18:38:41 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: Canada: Pot Charges Higher Than Ever, Even Police Call For Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: 10 Mar 1999 Source: London Free Press (Canada) Copyright: 1999 The London Free Press a division of Sun Media Corporation. Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.canoe.ca/LondonFreePress/home.html Forum: http://www.lfpress.com/londoncalling/SelectForum.asp Author: Nahlah Ayed POT CHARGES HIGHER THAN EVER, EVEN POLICE CALL FOR SOFTER LAW OTTAWA -- Marijuana is the leading cause of drug-related criminal charges in the 1990s, despite growing ambivalence about whether the weed should be illegal. Marijuana's resurgence as the drug of choice for Canadians, and increasing availability of home-grown pot has been accompanied by a big jump in pot-related charges over the past decade compared with other drugs. Statistics Canada data released yesterday indicates the overall number of offences hasn't changed much since 1983. But marijuana-related charges accounted for 72 per cent of the total in 1997, compared with 58 per cent in 1991. Half of drug crimes reported by Canadian police in 1997 stemmed from cannabis possession. Charges related to heroin and cocaine dropped between 1991 and The Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, which produced the figures, says it doesn't know why the number of marijuana offences has grown while others have fallen. But Neil Boyd, a Simon Fraser University criminologist, says the growing popularity of marijuana might partly account for the trend. Others say the growing availability of made-in-Canada marijuana might explain it. Either way, the trend is disturbing for those who support legalization of cannabis. "I don't see how in this day and age anybody can seriously argue that prosecuting people for simple possession of marijuana does one iota of good for society," said Eugene Oscapella, a member of the Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy, an Ottawa drug policy think-tank. "It's an unnecessary waste of dollars, (it's) diversion of police resources and the diminution of civil liberties." He charged that it's easier to go after marijuana users than hard drug traffickers. "It's an easy statistic for the cops. It's easy to bust people, easy to detect. Police want statistics to prove what they're doing is working." The Canadian Police Association says forces don't have enough resources to fight drug crime at the source. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police is against legalization but wants Ottawa to look at decriminalization in some circumstances. Barry King, police chief in Brockville, said officers are getting fired for using discretion when it comes to drugs and Ottawa has to take the lead on giving police the option of letting minor drug offences go. "That's what they're saying to them, do something legitimate, codify it, give our people the authority and the protection," he said. "We're looking for discretion as much as anybody else."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weed leads to most charges (The Canadian Press version) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Weed leads to most charges http: //www.canoe.ca/TopStories/pot2_mar10.html (fwd) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 08:09:09 -0800 Lines: 100 Wednesday, March 10, 1999 Weed leads to most charges Vy NAHLAH AYED -- The Canadian Press OTTAWA (CP) -- Marijuana is the leading cause of drug-related criminal charges in the 1990s, despite growing ambivalence about whether the weed should be illegal. Marijuana's resurgence as the drug of choice for Canadians and increasing availability of the home-grown stuff has been accompanied by a big jump in pot-related charges over the past decade compared with other drugs. Statistics Canada data released Tuesday indicates the number of offences hasn't changed much since 1983. But marijuana-related offences accounted for 72 per cent in 1997, compared with 58 per cent in 1991. Charges related to heroin and cocaine have dropped over the same period. In fact, half of drug crimes reported by Canadian police in 1997 stemmed from cannabis possession. The Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, which produced the figures, says it doesn't know why the number of marijuana offences has grown while others have dropped. But Neil Boyd, a Simon Fraser University criminologist, says the growing popularity of marijuana might partly account for the trend. Others say growing availability of made-in-Canada marijuana might explain it. Either way, the trend is disturbing for those who support legalization of cannabis. "I don't see how in this day and age anybody can seriously argue that prosecuting people for simple possession of marijuana does one iota of good for society," said Eugene Oscapella, a member of the Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy, an Ottawa drug policy think-tank. "It's an unnecessary waste of dollars, (it's) diversion of police resources and the diminution of civil liberties." He charged that it's easier to go after marijuana users than hard drug traffickers. "It's an easy statistic for the cops. It's easy to bust people, easy to detect. Police want statistics to prove what they're doing is working." The Canadian Police Association says forces don't have enough resources to fight drug crime at the source. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police is against legalization, but wants Ottawa to look at decriminalization in some circumstances. Barry King, police chief in Brockville, Ont., said officers are getting fired for using discretion when it comes to drugs and Ottawa has to take the lead on giving cops the option of letting minor drug offences go. "That's what they're saying to them: do something legitimate, codify it, give our people the authority and the protection," he said. "We're looking for discretion as much as anybody else." Ottawa isn't currently looking at the issue, but last week, Health Minister Allan Rock announced his department would conduct clinical trials on the medicinal use of marijuana. It's a start, says Umberto Iorfida, president of the National Organization for the Reform or Repeal of Marijuana Laws, based in King City, Ont. However, he added that police, and governments that fund them, could save a bundle of money if they just legalized marijuana use. British Columbia led the pack in 1997 with the highest rate of drug crime, as it has since 1982. Its 1997 rate was 426 drug offences for every 100,000 population, a rate that's almost twice the national rate of 222 offences per 100,000 population. Police forces reported 66,500 offences under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act in 1997. Almost 41,000 youths and adults were charged with a drug offence, with 90 per cent of them being male. Those charged with heroin and cocaine offences had an average age of 30. Those charged with cannabis offences were younger, with an average age of 25.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Pot charges on the rise (The Toronto Star version) Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 11:22:05 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Dave Haans (email@example.com) Subject: TorStar: Pot charges on the rise Newshawk: Dave Haans Sourse: The Toronto Star (Canada) Pubdate: Wednesday, March 10, 1999 Page: A2 Website: http://www.thestar.com Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Author: Elaine Carey, Toronto Star Demographics Reporter Pot charges on the rise Law professor wants to legalize cannabis use Despite growing cries to decriminalize it, more young people continue to be charged with marijuana offences. More than seven out of every 10 drug offences in Canada were related to marijuana in 1997 and two-thirds of them were for simple possession, Statistics Canada said yesterday. Among those charged, 86 per cent were under the age of 25. After dropping dramatically in the 1980s, marijuana offences have risen steadily through the '90s while cocaine offences have dropped by 11 per cent and heroin has stayed at about 2 per cent of all charges. The rate of charges for cultivating marijuana rose by almost a third in 1997, due to more sophisticated growing techniques that allow Canadian traffickers to produce high-quality plants, the study says. That is another argument for legalizing it, since organized crime no longer controls marijuana in Canada and the violence associated with it has disappeared, said Osgoode Hall law professor Alan Young, who has spent years battling for its decriminalization in the courts. ``The good news is that it is now a domestic product,'' he said. ``Growing it has become a cottage industry.'' The statistics fly in the face of police assertions that charging Canadians with marijuana offences is a low priority, he said. Part of the problem is that the smell is easy to detect. Young is awaiting a Court of Appeal decision on whether the pungent aroma of marijuana alone is sufficient grounds for police to conduct a search for its source. Over-all, 47,908 people were charged with marijuana offences in 1997, up from 33,267 in 1991. Charges peaked in 1981 at 75,104, then dropped dramatically through the '80s after the passage of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms before rising again through the '90s. British Columbia had the highest rate of drug offences at 426 per 100,000 people, almost twice the national average, although it charges fewer people, especially for marijuana offences. Only 35 per cent of marijuana incidents resulted in charges there, compared to 80 per cent in the other provinces. Ontario laid 20,927 drug charges in 1997, 15,550 of them for marijuana. Four out of five were for possession. The debate over whether having and smoking marijuana should be a criminal offence heated up again last year when Canadian snowboarder Ross Rebagliati lost his Olympic gold medal after traces of marijuana were detected in a drug test. After a public outcry, the medal was reinstated. ``The majority of voices are crying out from all parts of society to decriminalize it, but I just don't see the political will to do it,'' Young said. He estimates that Canada spends $1 billion a year on drug enforcement and between $600,000 and $700,000 is spent just on investigations and charges related to marijuana possession. ``That doesn't include the human and social cost of criminalizing otherwise law-abiding citizens,'' he said. ``Six hundred thousand Canadians have a criminal record for using marijuana and are marginalized from society because of it.'' ------------------------------------------------------------------
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