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Photo: Westword
Cannabis potency testers Full Spectrum Laboratories were raided by federal agents Wednesday. Marijuana samples were seized, but no arrests were made.

​Federal agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration earlier this week raided a Denver potency testing laboratory and seized medical marijuana samples.

Cannabis advocates say the federal raid is the latest example of continued official harassment of the medical marijuana industry, reports John Ingold at The Denver Post.
The raid of Full Spectrum Laboratories happened on Wednesday, according to Betty Aldworth, the lab’s outreach director. Aldworth said federal agents took dozens of medical marijuana samples, both small amounts of pot and test tubes of “extraction fluid,” but left the lab’s equipment.
No employees were arrested.
Aldworth was at the State Capitol to watch lab co-owner Bob Winnicki testify about State Senator Chris Romer’s new medical marijuana bill when both Full Spectrum employees got an email letting them know the DEA had “stopped by” the lab, reports Michael Roberts at Westword.
By the time Aldworth and Winnicki got back to the lab, “it was full of DEA agents” and other local law enforcement hangers-on who spent the next several hours seizing all the marijuana they could find.

Photo: www.hollywire.com
Where there’s Willie, there’s weed. Let’s just all come to terms with it.

​Willie Nelson was supposed to play a gig in Kenansville, North Carolina Thursday night, but he had to cancel the show because of an illness.

But you know how it is on the road. The show got canceled, and the probably bored and stir-crazy members of his band managed to get themselves into some trouble there in little old Duplin County.
Agents with the North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement Division issued citations to three members of Nelson’s band for having moonshine whiskey and small amounts of marijuana, reports Laura Phelps at WNCT.com.

Graphic: photobucket.com
California’s 2010 election: Be there, or be square.

​Do you live in California? Are you over 18? Then make sure you’re registered and ready to vote.

Supporters of legalizing marijuana announced Thursday they have gathered about 700,000 signatures for their initiative, making it almost certain that Californians will be able to vote on it in November.

The marijuana advocates plan to turn in the petitions to elections officials in some of the state’s larger counties, including Los Angeles, reports John Hoeffel in the Los Angeles Times.
Supporters need 433,971 valid signatures to qualify the measure, known as the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act.
The initiative’s main promoter, medical marijuana entrepreneur Richard Lee of Oaksterdam University in Oakland, paid for the professional signature-gathering effort that was bolstered by volunteers from California’s hundreds of cannabis dispensaries.

Photo: NIDA Marijuana Project at The University of Mississippi
The entire supply of marijuana for research in the United States is grown by the NIDA in Mississippi.

​One federal agency controls all the marijuana research done in the United States. And that agency has just admitted that it won’t fund research into the benefits of marijuana — only the supposed “negative consequences.”

A spokesperson for the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) told the New York Times last week that the agency “does not fund research focused on the potential medical benefits of marijuana.”

“As the National Institute on Drug Abuse, our focus is primarily on the negative consequences of marijuana use,” NIDA spokeswoman Shirley Simson told the Times.

Graphic: OC Weekly

​A Florida man has agreed to plead guilty to selling, over the Internet, a powdered drink mix designed to help truck drivers, pilots, train engineers and others pass federally mandated urine tests to detect drugs.

Stephen Sharp claimed the mix is 100 percent effective in blocking the urine tests from showing metabolites of common recreational drugs, including marijuana.

Photo: CBS13.com
If you plan on stealing James Tillman’s marijuana, you’re going to need more than three guys.

​They’re not going to get James Tillman’s weed.

Tillman, 67, on Sunday shot and wounded one of three burglars who broke into his Sacramento, California home to steal his medical marijuana, reports Elyce Kirchner of CBS13.com.
The other two fled and haven’t been seen since.

Mr. Tillman was definitely having none of their nonsense. After all, his grandkids were at home.
Tillman was in his bedroom when the intruders tried to go all gangster on him, but he wasn’t trippin.’
“We went back and forth and I shot him,” Tillman said. “They just didn’t give a damn. They knew we were in here, with the lights on, and with kids.”

Photo: Courtesy Andreas Fuhrmann/Record Searchlight
From left, Jason Ramey, 30, Travis Stock, 31, and Garrett Houchins, 30, picked up their medical marijuana from the Red Bluff Police Department on Wednesday.

​Three California men Wednesday picked up their medical marijuana from the Red Bluff Police Department, where it had been since being seized in an October raid.

Garret Houchins and Jason Ramey, both 30, and Travis Stock, 31, along with another man, Corey Perkiss, were growing 11 plants at Stock’s home, reports The Redding Record Searchlight.
They were arrested on suspicion of possessing marijuana for sale, processing marijuana and conspiracy.

Photo: chattahbox.com
Crime rates at Denver dispensaries are only half that at banks, lower than at liquor stores, and equal to that at pharmacies, according to a police study

​A Denver Police Department analysis says that medical marijuana dispensaries in the city were robbed or burglarized at a lower rate last year than either banks or liquor stores, reports John Ingold at The Denver Post.

According to the analysis, in a memo authored by Division Chief Tracie Keesee for Denver City Council members, the robbery and burglary rate for dispensaries in 2009 was equivalent to that of pharmacies.
This is the first time Denver police have compared crime at dispensaries with crime at other businesses. Police spokesman John White declined to speculate on the bigger meaning of the numbers until the department can do a more thorough analysis.

Graphic: strk3.com

​Monday in New York State Supreme Court, Michael Mineo took the stand to describe his nightmarish experience in a Brooklyn subway station in 2008: Being held down by three New York City police officers and sodomized with a police baton.

Mineo’s crime? Smoking marijuana.
The Brooklyn cops chased Mineo into the station after they saw him smoking pot, reports Tony Newman at AlterNet.
Mineo says the cops tackled him and that one of them sodomized him with a police baton. The cops then gave him a summons, and threatened he’d be served with a felony charge if he went to the hospital for treatment or to the police station to report what had happened.
The story is corroborated by eyewitnesses, including a transit police officer. The three officers accused in the brutal attack are now on trial.

Graphic: KOMO 4
HB 2401 would have legalized and taxed marijuana in Washington; the herb would be sold in state liquor stores. Since the Legislature dropped the ball, now it’s up to the voters.

​For the first time ever, the Washington Legislature looked at not one, but two bills to reform marijuana laws in the state. And although both were voted down in committee, advocates say marijuana legalization is still alive, with an initiative campaign trying to get a measure on the ballot in November, reports Matt Phelps of the Kirkland Reporter.

“My motivation was to get the criminals out of the business and stop the harm that the current prohibition is doing,” said Rep. Roger Goodman (D-Kirkland), who cosponsored House Bill 2401 with Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson (D-Seattle).
“Many polls in Washington and nationwide show a favorability toward decriminalization,” Goodman said.
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