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!