Friday, April 26, 2013

Marijuana brownies sold to North Seattle teens

According to the Seattle Police Department, earlier this month they received complaints about middle school and high school students buying marijuana and marijuana-laced brownies from a residence in the Ballard neighborhood.  Detectives observed school-aged children from Ballard High School and Whitman Middle School going to the back door of the suspect residence and buying marijuana. 

On the morning of April 24th Seattle Police served a search warrant on the suspect residence.  Five adults were inside and were detained and interviewed by detectives.  The primary suspect, a 50-year-old male, was arrested at his place of employment.

Marijuana cigarettes, brownies, and multiple bags of marijuana were found in several rooms inside the residence.  Seven trays of marijuana brownies were found in the basement along with a marijuana grow operation.  

I-502, medical marijuana, and youth access 
Though the possession of small amounts of marijuana is now legal for adults in our state, it is not legal for people under the age of 21. 

While it is illegal for minors to possess marijuana for recreational use, minors may possess marijuana for medicinal use if they have an authorization.   

It is unknown if the people arrested for allegedly selling pot brownies to children have medical marijuana authorizations.  While it is illegal for any of them to sell marijuana to minors, it would not be illegal for them to grow 15 marijuana plants each and possess 24 ounces of marijuana each if they have medical authorizations.

Easy access to marijuana among adults means easy access to marijuana among youth.  While children were apparently buying marijuana from the adults arrested in this situation, most children who use marijuana do not get it by directly purchasing it.  Like alcohol, most youth who use marijuana obtain it socially.  It only takes a few kids buying marijuana from an adult or from a dispensary if they have a medical authorization to supply their friends with it.   

NE Seattle crime related to marijuana 
Recently, several home invasions have involved marijuana grow operations in homes.  Right here in NE Seattle earlier this month, a home in View Ridge was robbed and the victims were held at gun point while the suspects took marijuana plants, weapons, cash, and a victim’s car.

Initiative 502 set the stage for a legal marijuana marketplace but work to keep our children drug-free and our community’s safe remains and likely will require more vigilance.  

May 9 Update:  KIRO-TV reports that parents complained for a year about the man selling marijuana brownies to children.

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