May 182012
 

idaho medical marijuanaIdaho Has Some Of The Harshest Marijuana Laws In The Country

If you are a marijuana consumer, and you can avoid Idaho, please do so at all costs. I was supposed to be there right now, but I was so worried about the reefer madness there that I went back across the Snake River and got the first hotel room I could find. On this side of the Snake River I’m a registered, protected medical marijuana patient. The two ounces I brought with me are 1/12th of the amount I’m allowed to legally carry. Compare that to the other side of the Snake River, where my two ounces could land me in jail for up to a year. If I had three ounces, that number would jump up to 5 years in prison.

The laws in Idaho are so harsh, and the people here are so unfamiliar with marijuana, that I’m afraid to even talk to anyone about it when I go there, regardless of if I have any on me or not. All routes going East out of Oregon require a ‘white knuckle’ drive through Idaho. People need to be aware of what they are risking if they are planning on making that type of trip. Below is information from NORML in regards to Idaho’s marijuana laws:

Decriminalized? — No.

Under the influence of marijuana in public is a misdemeanor, punishable by 6 months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Possession of 3 oz or less is a misdemeanor, punishable by 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Possession of more than 3 oz is a felony, punishable by 5 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Distributing or cultivating less than 1 lb (24 plants) is a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a $15,000 fine.

Distributing or cultivating 1 to 5 lbs (24 — 49 plants) is a felony, punishable by a minimum sentence of 1 year in prison and up to a $50,000 fine.

Distributing or cultivating 5 to 25 lbs (50 — 99 plants) is a felony, punishable by a minimum sentence of 3 years in prison and up to a $50,000 fine.

Distributing or cultivating more than 25 lbs (100 plants or more) is a felony, punishable by a minimum sentence of 5 years in prison and up to a $50,000 fine.

Distributing any amount to a minor who is 3 years or younger than the offender is a felony, punishable by double the penalties in both categories.

Distributing any amount where a minor(s) is present is a felony, punishable by 5 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Being present where drug activity occurs with knowledge of the activity is a misdemeanor, punishable by 90 days in jail and a $300 fine.

Possession of paraphernalia is a misdemeanor, punishable by 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Distributing or manufacturing paraphernalia is a felony, punishable by 9 years in prison and a $30,000 fine.

Subsequent marijuana offenses can double the penalties in each category.

Medical Program? — No.

Below is some very important information that every medical marijuana consumer needs to be aware of before they drive through Idaho with medical marijuana:

I have been meaning to point out an alarming trend in Idaho, but I wanted to get more information before I wrote about it. I have talked to countless family members, activists, and concerned citizens in Idaho recently. They explained to me that cops in Idaho are waiting along the border to try to profile people they think may have purchased medical marijuana in states like Oregon. One person told me today that it’s really bad along I-84, especially around the Homedale junction.

I have a lot of family in Homedale (population 2,535?) and I called some of my cousins to see if this is true. They told me that this is not only common, it’s pretty standard now. Six cop cars at each major entry point into Idaho along the Washington/Idaho/Nevada border is an every day occurrence he said. He was quick to point out that he doesn’t travel as often as some people, but that everyone talks about it in Homedale and Payette.

One activist that I was talking to on Facebook was explaining to me that the cops are profiling cars that have disabled parking permits hanging from their rear view mirrors. I don’t have a source to site, so you can take that information for what you want. If you are from Idaho, can you confirm or deny that? Readers would benefit from your comments. What I do have a source for is the case of Justin Brownrigg. Justin Brownrigg was caught in Idaho with 69 pounds. I personally don’t think that is a smart thing to do, so I don’t want to highlight him, but I do want to highlight how he was busted.

The cops in Oregon pulled Mr. Brownrigg over and smelled marijuana. He flashed an Oregon medical marijuana card and the cops had to let him go. But what the Oregon police did was call the Idaho police…you know the end of the story. Despite what people think, Oregon medical marijuana cards are not legal outside of Oregon. A lot of people are getting them from outside of Oregon since Oregon doesn’t require residency, and for some reason they are under the impression that their card is good wherever they go. That’s just simply not the case. The second you cross state lines, that medical marijuana is illegal, and you are liable to prosecution.

Because of the increasing amount of people coming West for marijuana, medical and recreational, cops in bordering states are taking notice. Idaho has always been a conservative state, so it doesn’t surprise me to hear the things that I’m hearing. One thing that people need to watch out for in Idaho is ‘drug inspection checkpoints.’ I haven’t heard of them popping up, yet, but if there is any place that will try to do this to it’s citizens and travelers, it’s the state of Idaho. Click this link to read more about ‘drug inspection checkpoints.’ I must warn you, it’s some of the most hardcore abuse of police powers I’ve heard of in awhile, and it may induce anger.

And finally, after all the sad information, I find it necessary to remind people in Idaho that hope is on the way – see an article re-posted below:

There are several reports coming out of Idaho that the medical marijuana initiative there will not make the ballot. One of the articles was titled, ‘Group misses mark for medical marijuana initiative.’ I don’t like that title. Mainstream media always tries to trash on medical marijuana campaigns if they don’t make the ballot, acting like everything was done for no reason. This isn’t coincidence – mainstream media tries to downplay marijuana reform campaigns to try to keep the public from supporting them in the future.

I would argue that the Idaho medical marijuana campaign did exactly what it needed to do. Sure, ballot access would have been optimal, but there were still a lot of things accomplished by the signature drive. People in Idaho are talking about medical marijuana more than ever now, especially older voters. A big part of my family is in Idaho, and they never thought medical marijuana would ever have a prayer in Idaho. Now, they all agree that it’s not a matter of if medical marijuana comes to Idaho, it’s when.

Whether people want to realize it or not, Idaho already possesses everything they need to win in 2014. It’s no secret that there are Idaho residents crossing the Snake River to get medical marijuana cards and cannabis in Oregon. When you already have registered medical marijuana patients in the state, it’s easier to convince people it’s a good idea to start a medical marijuana program because after all, there are already patients in the state and the sky is still in place.

There’s already a lot of sympathetic business owners in Idaho. I don’t want to name names out of respect, but I know of two prominent business owners in Boise that now own collectives in Oregon. People like these are important for drumming up campaign funds. From the conversations I’ve had with people in Idaho, there are countless other possible campaign funders within the state. There are a lot of national organizations that will match campaign contributions, but rarely if ever do they pony up cash for a campaign that has little to no in-state contributions. Idaho is ahead of the curve in that respect.

I have talked quite a bit with people from Compassionate Idaho, and I can say for a fact that they have a solid plan for 2014. Expect a launch of the Compassionate Idaho website soon. Everything that was done thus far will be built upon going forward. If you live in Idaho, don’t be discouraged by media reports. Instead be encouraged to get active and continue to make change to prove those people wrong! Compassionate Idaho made a big splash in 2012. That splash will turn into a tidal wave in 2014!

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About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • http://www.facebook.com/emotastic93 Amber Lynn York

    thats freakin ridiculous!Â

  • Threapwood

    From an outsider looking in from the U.K I find it very strange that penalties vary so much from state to state, and that the Police would also entrap people by forwarding data to the other states law enforcement instead of advising them the risks and imminent arrest. Don’t think I fancy visiting the land of the free any time soon!  G :)

    • Cannawolf

      Us Yanks sure do wonder where all those freedoms we learned about in school went!

    • http://www.facebook.com/jessee.anderson.3 Jessee Anderson

      I’m pretty sure we’ve lost that title a few years back with how bad cops and our government abuse their power given to them by us in the first place. All they need to do is look at kings of old and how the people revolted, sadly they won’t and I hope they don’t, cause then we can get medieval on their dumb asses.

    • KTT

      Not The Land of the Free anymore. Corrupt government, cops, judges, prosecutors, and prisons. We the citizens have to swear under oath to tell the truth, and nothing but the truth, but the officials can lie to us and about us. Pretty hard for the justice system to work, when there’s no justice left.Â

    • http://www.facebook.com/kim.paddock1 Kim Paddock

      Not only do penalties vary from state to state, but Federal Law rules over all of the individual states. So regardless of if that particular state has legal cannabis, the Federal government can send in their goon squads to shut down legal cannabis dispensaries. It is a violation of a persons’ rights for their own state to say that something is legal and then to get busted by the Feds for the very same thing. The Federal government, after all, are the ones who said that each state can make it’s own policies regarding such matters, and then the fed turns right around and busts people for it. It’s bullshit.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mara-Felsen/640640650 Mara Felsen

    I find it so bizarre that Idaho has such extraordinarily harsh cannabis laws when Idaho is the only state in the 9th circuit (all the states are put into 1 of 12 circuit courts for federal appeals) that doesn’t have a medical marijuana law.

  • Sbg138

    florida is just as bad on thier criminalizing tokers/ p.o.m under 20 grams can land you up to a year in jail+fines and is only a misdemeanor. anything over that IS considered a felony. if we americans want our freedoms restored and our constitutional right to stop being ripped apart by democrats and republicans. we need somebody like RON PAUL in the position of commander in chief.

  • KTT

    From experience, they will lie to pull you over, then lie about smelling marijuana. Having a Montana licenses plate, will get you profiled as a possible marijuana card holder. Idaho also will not allow you to use the medical defense to defend yourself. Card or not, you are illegal to them and will be charged. Another thing to remember is, no matter how much you have, or how many people are in your vehicle, Idaho will charge all of the people in the car, EACH, for the combined amount of marijuana you have. Example, 4 people in a car. Only 2 have marijuana, say 2 ounces each. Over 3 is a felony, and they will charge EACH person with all three ounces. AND IT’S LEGAL.  I-15  coming from Montana into Idaho, is risky. It is also known as the corridor from Canada and Montana. BE CAREFUL. Idaho Falls has a particularly nasty female prosecutor.

  • http://www.facebook.com/silverstorm42 Neal Feldman

    When I went to Denver from Oregon by road I went to Lakeview Oregon and took 140 to Winnemucca, NV and went through Salt Lake City UT and through Wyoming to get to Colorado.

    Idaho is eminently avoidable.

  • http://www.facebook.com/meatmanT Tony Partin

    stay out of georgia. anything over 1 oz. is a felony.

  • InKSLimbo

    I got arrested in Kansas with .8 grams.. you read that correctly, GRAMS. I was facing a year in county with a $1000 fine. Not to mention it was in the most notorious county for marijuana convictions. Luckily I have never had any priors before so I was able to do a PTD, but it took them 6 months to process the year commitment. I’m still going through it. Ruined my life, I lost everything. All for something that a single state over would be a slap on the wrist or completely legal. Â

  • http://www.facebook.com/OklahomaWeed Oklahoma Weed

      Talk to some one every day about legal medical marijuana and ask them to do the same.

    And now a message to our politicians MAKE IT LEGAL OR WE GONNA FIRE YOUR ASSES…..

    http://www.facebook.com/okweedÂ

  • noramoo

    wonder if you could sue under the ADA for discriminating against drivers with disabilities ?

    btw, oregon also has a problem if its police are ratting out medical patients. i wonder why he didnt fight that in court. seems like the cop broke hippa laws by doing that?

  • Nygratefulfred

    guess when I travel I will avoid spending any of my time or money in Idaho,but I will make a pipe to smoke Marijuana out of one of their potatoes!

    • Bud smoker

      Mormons are mental..seriously fucked

  • Lindseyrinehart

    Idaho has a TON of fear but all of our discussions have really softened people to the idea of medical.  Even if they don’t like the idea, they are at least getting used to the idea and discussing it. (hopefully with people who are pro!!)  Johnny is correct, 2014 is HUGE for us here in this state!  It Is kinda scary here but we are going to change that!!  the New petition calls for our state to recognize other states cards too.  Please help if you can!  compassionateidaho.webs.com is our Existing website until we get our new one. ;) Please help us and hit the donate button if you are able.  We appreciate all of your support!!

  • http://twitter.com/solarcomet Mark Shaw

    Makes me sad to see a headline like this because it immediately makes people start stereotyping Idaho. Besides most of this information being written out of angst, “avoiding” Idaho is probably the lamest thing I’ve ever heard. This state is big and beautiful unlike any place I’ve ever been and I’ve traveled this whole continent. If there’s one thing that cannabis users have going for them in Idaho, it’s being a part of a state that cannot stand Federal interference. Idaho fought for many years trying to keep the Feds out of their forest system and to this day we’re the only state in the country that has no Federal parks because we wanted to avoid their bureaucratic BS and run our parks the way WE want to. Which has been incredibly successful. In this respect, I think Idaho has an excellent chance of being a front-runner for states rights. Explaining to officials that the only reason we are afraid of cannabis is because of the laws set forth by our own federal government is a step in the right direction. Idaho also has a crisis with tax revenue, so if they legalize it to a certain degree, obviously there’s some huge potential to make some money for the state. Ultimately if we sit here and make stupid comments about Idaho being a Mormon Potato State, then we’re not going to progress at all. There are tons of cannabis users in Boise hence the HEMP FEST 2011 and nobody gave us a hard time. I say HEY CANNABIS USERS, COME TO IDAHO AND STOP BEING SO FRIGHTENED.  If we run and hide, then we’re not doing any good. Obviously don’t be an idiot and smoke a blunt while driving down the road, blast your music up ridiculously loud and drive 25mph wherever you go. You’re just begging for trouble. The reality of it is, people don’t get bothered for what they do in their own homes here in Idaho, so there’s nothing to be afraid of. I just think as far as Idaho’s legislation is concerned, tell your officials that Idaho has been known to stand up to the feds before, and cannabis should be another reason why we should keep fighting them and you will win over some die-hard Idahoans.Â

    • jbgump

      i lived in Idaho the past year and have come to the conclusion that it’s better to have a registered AR15 on your lap when getting pulled over than a blunt in the ashtray..It really is a Mormon/BillyBob ass backwards state and I will move to Reno and commute to work soon. I will admit that it’s a wonderful state to own a business though like mine, where I have an unlimited supply of hard working, uneducated white kids, pay them dirt wages with no overtime and no benefits

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003368044930 Kevin Hatch

    While you have good points and info, the max penalty is far from what they actually give you. I got caught with an once and a half all in separate bags plus a few item of paraphernalia and the cops just wrote me 1 possession ticket, I had to pay $100 fine plus court costs and 1 yr. unsupervised probation which I forgot I was even on it is so easy.  Point is you are blowing this way out of proportion, I’ve been pulled over multiple time and they say they smell marijuana and ask to search my car I just no you don’t smell it and no you can’t search my car without a warrant and they send me on my way without any tickets. It’s easier here than you think but still a far cry from being decriminalized. I agree with Mark, Idaho has beautiful and diverse scenery and is why hunters and fisherman come from all over to get a piece of it, to scare people into stereotyping and scaring people away from Idaho is completely counterproductive.

    • Guest

      That was the stupidest thing ive heard all day.
      Your a rationalizing fool

    • SnakeRiverHooligan

      That is retarded bro. I live in ID and this place will normally screw you. you got lucky AF

  • c.fox

    Well, I’m an Oregon medical marijuana patient, now charged in the crap state of idaho with misdemeanor possession of the small amount of weed that was in my vapor pipe, which I’d honestly forgotten was tucked behind my seat. I had no other marijuana or drugs in the car, but I’m facing a possible thousand dollar fine, possible jail time, community service, and a year of probation. I have to go get a “drug evaluation” done prior to the next court date. I’m 29 and have never been in trouble in my entire life, and I’m an army vet. None of that matters a bit in idaho. The cops were nasty from the start, the judge doesn’t seem interested in anything I had to say, basically if you go into that horrible state with even a thimble full of weed, check your dignity at the border because you’re just scum to them. After this mess is finally over, however it turns out, I will NEVER go back, I don’t care if the laws change some day, I’d rather put the extra miles on my car and drive around idaho than set foot in that fascist hellhole again. Sadly, I’m forced to go back later this month, to be punished for my terrible crimes against humanity.

    All I can say is, avoid that place at all costs. They talk big about freedom, but it’s all just talk. Vote with your dollars, spend them in states that deserve it. Oregon is a thousand times prettier anyway.

    • http://twitter.com/solarcomet Mark Shaw

      Did you really have to go and make this a pissing contest? You’re missing the point of our posts. Yes there is a problem with how people view cannabis and especially the laws. But to tell people to avoid a whole state? You’d rather tell people to not visit the Sawtooth mountains and the snake river just because they can’t smoke a fuckin bowl driving like an idiot down the road and get pulled over by the cops and expect to get off scott-free? Amazing.Â

  • http://twitter.com/solarcomet Mark Shaw

    lol. now that’s just funny.

  • http://www.facebook.com/miggy420 Miggy Miggs

    The cops may be dicks but I’ve met kind smokers in Boise. Unfortunately the reefer madness is strong with the running government there and yet they want to draw more industry there.

  • lindseyrinehart

    Thank you Johnny!!

  • Bonnie

    I got pulled over 2 days ago in Idaho on I-15. Cops said I was doing 82 mph my cruise control was set at 75. I’m a patient as well I only had a 1/3 of a joint in my purse. I have court on the 8th facing two misdemeanor charges.

  • CarolAnne

    You all know what Idaho has a ton of don’t you? Among other things, Idaho is home to numerous “therapeutic boarding schools” for wayward kids. Kids with psychological problems, drinking, and drug problems. You can’t have those high dollar businesses in a state with lax pot laws. And fyi–it’s BIG business.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002015312327 William James Esbensen

    its all about the green johnny!they will try anything to protect their private prison rackett!and now as you know they are trying to pass a bill so that no matter what cannabis is never legal in this state?nevermind that it is blowing up cancer(which our goverment has known sinse 1974?creating the largest genocide in the world ever????????these guy are freaks and idaho needs to come out of the closet and address these things!as you know i was pulled over 3 times coming into idaho and on the 3rd time it was by 5 cop cars and a dog?5 cop cars for only having 1 plate on my truck?stand up for something or be persocuted for everything!!!!!!

  • Synistermusicproductions

    I’m a resident of Idaho, and I hate this pos state and it’s bullshit cat and mouse mentality police.

  • SnakeRiverHooligan

    It is the mormons! Its infested here! you peeps don’t even know how depressing it is to live here. for real

  • Ben Nill

    Trust me Idaho will go down kicking and screaming when it comes to marijuana. I am a convicted felon for marijuana, for selling 1/2 oz. I have been put through enough rehab to fill up an hour a day for more than 365 days. I spent 6 months in prison and i was ordered to pay 2500. However if you fail to pay your fine on time they ad 33.5% interest automatically, because if paying less is too difficult than adding more will help adjust your attitude. But that’s not all, After incarceration I got 5 more years of probation. Even though I am in college and a father on a student salary i am required to pay $60 a month for supervision costs. I am never given UAs and the only time i see my PO is once a month, but if the 60 isn’t paid i will go to jail until someone pays it. Its absolute insanity here and if you smoke weed, then you are labeled as an addict,you can’t get work, and you can expect the number one priority to be to pay up. If you are openly against the laws here, you can also expect to have you kids taken by the state. Idaho is corrupt, backwards, and stubbornly ignorant. the person sentenced before me was 30 and slept with a 15 year old on felony probation for the same thing, walked out of the court room free to go. I sold marijuana to a responsible adult… 6 months with 5 years of probation and 5 years of prison if i blow it. If you smoke weed stay the hell out of Idaho because once they get you there is no escape. I’ve been looking for a way out and the only way is to pay a non refundable $100 fee to just ask, they say no a lot. If the answer is yes in order to leave you have to pay $1500 (non refundable) to cover the costs of transporting you back if screw up. I wish there was a state that gave political asylum because I would be more than happy to leave this hole forever. STAY AWAY!

    • Joe

      And ALL 100% preventable. Don’t smoke and sell dope. So simple.

  • wing

    When you grow up with it like that, your used to it, so its like nothing to drive, smoke, and being stoned in public.

  • Joe

    The reason for that is because they don’t want smelly shiftless potheads and drug dealers in Idaho. A great way to make sure pothead losers don’t move there and sign up for Idaho social services and dope dealers stay out is by having tough drug laws. It’s a GOOD thing and as a result it’s a great place to live for moral family people that don’t do and sell dope and live off welfare.

    If you don’t like it, move to California and live with the scum. You can fight the scum for what handouts still remain for the time left before bankruptcy mania takes over the state. It’s already started in some cities. Los Angeles (4 million people) is a sanctuary city for gangs and illegal aliens that is going to fold in the not too distant future. Move there. Happy trails.

    • Jehovah, keeper of handshakes

      And I, the Lord, said, this is my beloved mormon, in whom I am well pleased.