If law enforcement officials in Montana have their way, they’ll know exactly where every single private, state-legal medical marijuana grow in the Big Sky state is located.
Back in January, the Missouri Diver Drug Task Force got District Court Judge John Brown to order the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services (DHHS) to release the names and addresses of all medical pot growers in the state so they could better investigate those growing pot illegally. All of that probably makes sense to you if you’re a drug warrior who still believes that the War on Drugs is working, but to anyone else it’s a blatant violation of legal patient and caregiver privacy.
Now the issue is up before the courts again, with the DHHS arguing in Gallatin County District Court yesterday that the information is constitutionally protected and can only be made available upon request and even then it would have to be on a case-by-case basis for a specific location. DHHS notes that the current system has been in place for years and cops already have access to as much information as they need.
Cops and state attorneys disagree.
“So we got reports concerning marijuana grows from concerned citizens,” Deputy County Attorney Erin Murphy tells local KXAF. “When they can determine that its legal then we don’t do any further investigations if it is illegal then we continue to investigate.”
Which is exactly what cops have been able to do all along, just not fast enough for their liking. They don’t want to have to follow the law, they’d rather have the DHHS illegally hand over the list so the police can have it on hand, you know, for safe keeping.
No ruling was made yesterday, and the court could take all summer to decide whether or not to uphold the transfer of all medical marijuana growers to cops.