Security Concerns Arise With Medical Marijuana Centers in Rhode Island

By Matthew Harwood

A state police officer voiced some security concerns at a Rhode Island Department of Health meeting yesterday, relating to the state's recent decision to allow the sale of medical marijuana to chronically ill people, reports the Associated Press.

The concerns revolve around whether it would be safe for legal marijuana sellers to deliver the drug to their customers and how police will tell those legally allowed to sell and use marijuana from those who aren't.

State Police Capt. David Neill, commander of the detective unit, worried at the meeting that thieves could target drivers delivering the drug. Neill also said police need a way to easily identify through the health department caregivers and patients who can possess it legally.

Right now, police can only learn that information by examining a state-issued card given to patients and caregivers who register. This week, police spent time secretly watching a suspected marijuana dealer in Warwick only to learn he was allowed to have the drug under the medical marijuana program, Neill said. Police learned of the man's status when they confronted him.

Rhode Island lawmakers this year voted to make Rhode Island the third state in the nation to allow chronically ill people to smoke marijuana to alleviate symptoms and suffering connected to their medical conditions. Currently, about 900 patients have applied for the right to purchase marijuana legally. The law will establish three compassion centers in the state to sell marijuana for medicinal use.

Photo by Caveman 92223/Flickr


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