What Should I do if I am Questioned by an Officer for Medical Marijuana Use?

by Salvatore P. Ciulla on November 19, 2014 · 0 comments

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In 1996, the state of California made medical marijuana use legal through the Compassionate Care Act. However, marijuana for any use is still illegal under federal law. That’s because it’s still on the FDAs schedule 1 substance list, which classifies marijuana as a drug that has no known medical uses, is at high risk for being abused, and is inherently dangerous.


Since then, acceptable amounts for personal use have been established, and President Obama has even made clear that the DEA will not be actively prosecuting cases involving medical use of marijuana. Proposition 215 put in place a state ID program that protects cardholders from state and local prosecution for legal use of medical marijuana within California cities and towns. However, there are still instances where individuals are arrested.


So what should you do if you are arrested for legal medical marijuana activity?


  1. Do not consent to a search or talk to an officer. The Fourth Amendment protects against warrantless search or seizure of your property. If an officer asks consent to search you or your property, plainly state that you do not consent to a search, you do not wish to answer any questions, and that you would like to be released if you are not under arrest.
  2. Don’t answer any questions without an attorney present. You have the right to remain silent. You do not have to answer any questions, and should not without an attorney present.
  3. Determine if police are able to detain you. Even though it may not seem like it, if an officer is not putting you under arrest and doesn’t have reasonable suspicion to detain you, you can leave. If an officer is attempting to detain you or question you, plainly state that you do not consent to any questioning, and that you would like to leave if you are not under arrest.


The Law Office of Salvatore Ciulla located in Orange County, California, represents individuals accused of murder and manslaughter, aggravated assault, burglary, theft and embezzlement, child abuse and domestic violence, narcotics possession and sales, drunk driving (DUI) and vehicular homicide, sexual assault and three strikes cases. We also take Juvenile Court cases and all misdemeanor offenses.


Our mission is to provide the best legal representation and counsel to all clients. Every client and every case is important. Call us at 714-542-0500 for a free analysis of your case and/or charges, or contact us at SalCiullaLaw.com.

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