3.07.2010

And That Drug Was? Marijuana

The story. I'm almost speechless. The guy possessed 4.6 ounces of marijuana. If it had been under 4 ounces then the maximum sentence would have been one year in the county jail! But once he cracked the 4 ounce barrier, he got into Felony Land with its crazy "enhancement" rules for past sins. Stay with me here: Possession of Marijuana of over four ounces but under five pounds is normally a State Jail Felony which requires probation for first time offenders. But this guy had two prior prison trips in, oh my, the 1980s! So the State got to use those prior convictions for enhancement which jacks up his exposure to a longer sentence. (A a ridiculous aspect of criminal law is there is no statute of limitations for using prior convictions for enhancement.) Have I said this before? Marijuana is a plant that grows from the ground. When I'm in my sixties and society is no longer insane, I might run for the Texas Legislature. I wouldn't pass any new laws -- just repeal the craziness that is on the books. ______________ Legal note: One thing I don't understand is that normally the two prior convictions would enhance the crime to a Second Degree Felony which would cap the maximum sentence at 20 years in prison. But the story indicates that both the prosecutor and the defense treated the case as a First Degree Felony. Edit: They updated the story to indicate the possession was in a Drug Free Zone: a day care center. That makes it a Third Degree enhanced to a First Degree. Welcome to Idiocracy.

60 comments:

Anonymous said...

we won't pay for health care but we will pay to keep this guy in jail for 35 years...go figure!!!

Anonymous said...

I would encourage those who want to sell or use marijuana in posted drug free zones to rethink it.

Anonymous said...

It would have been very, very, very easy for this person to avoid his situation.

Anonymous said...

My taxes will pay for this pothead to eat, sleep, and exist on my dime....for 35 years.
Not sure why the anti-socialist crowd approves of this
man not working and us paying for his care.
Drunk driver's that kill people get less.....let em toke for god's sakes.

Anonymous said...

I AM speechless

Anonymous said...

I don't smoke pot and DO NOT drink alcohol!! How many deaths, mangled bodies and major destruction has been caused by alcohol as opposed to pot use?? Any statistics?? Time for another poll, Barry!!

Anonymous said...

Now we know why Barry crossed over from prosecutor to defense attorney. He loves to drink, drive and smoke marijuana. It only becomes more obvious every day with his liberal view on the two items and always representing the people who do them same. You go Barry, roll up a fatty and drink a few 40's.

Anonymous said...

Most pot smokers are hit in the ass sooner or later.he he,I really mean they drive slow,really.DAGO

Anonymous said...

I am confused why smoking a weed is illegal, but I have a bunch of these annoying weeds with yellow flowers... if anyone wants them.. A crime without a victim, but we will now the taxpayers are the victim who will support him.. This is almost as crazy as the guy who said he makes
65,000 a year selling weed... and pays no taxes... PLEASE.. tax it!

Anonymous said...

why is it that the messenger hasn't reported on the train wreck from this morning between alvord and sunset?

Anonymous said...

7:30, Oh you'll pay for health care alright. Inferior health care. And if you don't pay, they will fine you and if you don't pay the fine, guess what? They will incarcerate you. Is that what you want?

littlesister said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

8:30, other "victimless" crimes might include squatting and pissing in the sporting goods aisle at Wal Mart, prostitution, sex with dead bodies or donkeys, getting on an airplane naked, and carefully emptying a machine gun into the grass of a town square. Who's the victim? Illegal behavior does not necessarily have to have a "victim". And with selling marijuana, you don't even know there aren't victims. You don't see them, so you think they don't exist. I've never seen the stairwell door on the 65th floor of the Empire State Building, but I don't go around thinking it doesn't exist.

Anonymous said...

Barry - The good news is this.... the lawyers of our society have seen the error of their ways so as of today they have collectively chosen to set aside their political aspirations, their greed, their ego, their good ol' boy affiliations and unethical tactics to see that this trend is now and forever reversed...... NOT.

Anonymous said...

A day care center...oh really was the suspect found with "Barney" rolling papers too intending on selling the diaper clad future stoners a joint.It just goes to show how far we really havent come.You can drink till your liver blows up ...but for goodness sake dont get your buzz from anything other than what the government tells you to...because its not inline with deep pockets ...or what the moral majority calls the in "click".How long will the prohibition last for those who would rather have a God given plant verses a man made poison?

uncle fester 2012

Anonymous said...

Marijuana is illegal because the government is afraid of pacifism.

Anonymous said...

Drug free zones keep sign makers in business, and make people who dont know any better feel "safe".

Anonymous said...

Well Mr. Green, your posture on the subject is no longer in question. The riddle has now become: Being the intelligent and persuasive man that you are, is this really the best you can do as concerns righting a wrong? Really, dude, if you believe so strongly about this issue, isn't it time to step up and quit taking the easy money defending DWI's and do something that will truly make a difference for society?

For the record; I like your blog but am starting to see it as superfluous ramblings. AND, I like pot and agree with your state of bafflement concerning our illogical legal approach. I just wonder why you aren't using your talents to step up to the plate on this.

Make a mark, man. Be someone of substance. Your current existence is looking a little lame

Anonymous said...

In a democracy, we the ignorant masses, have the constitutional right to elect representatives to make laws that agree with our value system. Liberals like Barry would like to change this.

RPM said...

Harry J. Anslinger would be pleased.

For all those who have no idea who he is watch the film "Grass" and get back to me.

Anonymous said...

The Bridgeport city council smokes, thats whats wrong with the utilities, they just sat there and laugh at the problem. Why do you think they call the mayor ( smoking Don )

Anonymous said...

I say smoke pot and have a good time,try it you might like it,tax it if you can find it.

Anonymous said...

..........."if he wouldn't have had it....he wouldn't be in trouble..."

How many times do we need to hear that before it cuts through the fog?

Anonymous said...

I'm betting the defendant was offered a sentence substantially lower for a plea of guilty. So, who is to blame?

Plus, on a 35 year sentence, he likely will make parole in less than 4 years.

Anonymous said...

Of course if that were any normal Baptist child, it would have been a minor crime! Gotta love those hypocrites!

Anonymous said...

This is not liberal vs. conservative...it's old vs. new, and the old should be dying off...shouldn't they?

wordkyle said...

1) Possession of an illegal substance.
2) Possession of an unwise amount of an illegal substance.
3) Possession of an unwise amount of an illegal substance in a "drug free zone."
4) Possession of an unwise amount of an illegal substance in a "drug free zone" after being busted twice before.

I'm not saying the sentencing was right or not. I'm simply pointing out that it took an incredible amount of incremental stupidity for the guy to be in that situation in the first place.

Anonymous said...

Haven't you ever watched Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew, or Intervention or any of the other reality shows about drug addiction? All of the serious drug addicts started out with pot. It's the gateway drug, hello!!

Anonymous said...

There is no such thing as a victimless crime. Guy flunks a UA at his job and gets fired. He starts stealing to support his habit. (Yes, its habit forming)
See it everyday. I am sure Barry does also. Right or wrong he was tried and sentenced within the law.

Rest assured he won't serve close to that 35 year sentence.

Anonymous said...

8:47
I'll be willing to bet that the true "gateway drug" was alcohol... oh wait but its not a "drug" sheese "goodbye".

Anonymous said...

9:22...I'll be willing to bet that the true "gateway" drug was nicotine.

Anonymous said...

Ok 8:51 is alcohol habit forming? Go check out the local AA.Its filled with scads of coffee drinking people that will tell ya it is.The point I am trying to make is you can make an addiction out of anything...sex,porn,gambling,tv,video games.Those who are going to abuse anything will and thats that.My first drug was alcohol by the way!

Anonymous said...

827 all because of gov prohibition on something they can't control..like they do every aspect of my life. btw f you.

Anonymous said...

I have been smoking for years and fill great.

wordkyle said...

100 - First of all, thanks for the offer, but no. I'm just not that into you.

If the "government prohibition" were to blame for this guy's crimes, then every single adult would be in jail for the same thing. He made a series of decisions that resulted in putting him where he is.

Anonymous said...

10:27,
If he would have had 10 cases of beer for instance would it have been 35 years with 2 prior alcohol possesion charges? No even if he were drunk driving by the school still a class b misdemeaner.There are a lot of productive members of society forced to drink alcohol because of the "prohibition", when I say forced... if you like a little something to wind down from a hard day at the office.I also believe a lot of people in jail for mary jane could be out working and paying taxes instead of the system eating up my tax dollars and not to mention letting those that should be in jail for far worse crimes out early because the system is full allready thats why people sit in jail for months before going to court.

wordkyle said...

1115 - I don't even know where to start. You use the word forced, then say "...if you like a little something to wind down..." User's choice, right? Why all the effort to avoid responsibility for knowingly using an illegal substance? Why the defense of a guy who put himself where he is? He probably didn't realize the consequences would be as severe as they turned out, but he had to expect something bad would happen if he got caught.

I said earlier that I won't comment on the sentencing's appropriateness. Too many factors, most of them unknown to (or beyond) me, play a role. But this particular guy should have better known better. Pot smokers knowingly practice an illegal habit, then complain about the consequences. What does that say about pot smokers?

Phillip J Hubbell said...

Pot is illegal because of the one thing about government that liberal lawyers don't want to change....its size. It is inertia that keeps the pot laws there and the piling on of sentences and add ons to the existing laws. People we send to Austin or Washington think they have to be doing something to impress the voters so we will send them again....so they pass more laws, raise more taxes, build more prisons....hire more prosecuters arrest more potheads...and the system is so big and convoluted that it just gets out of hand and can't be helped so in cycles we send a new political party to the capitols and they have to do something...right? So it gets bigger more expensive and less comprehensible....and we are too stupid to do anything about it....because we all want our little piece of the pie and send our politician to do something...anything....we don't care what. I am thinking we plow it all under and sow the ground with salt.

Anonymous said...

11:56,
Alcohol was at one time an illegal substance and many a decent hard working folk did it anyway knowing the consequences right..what did that say about consumers of alcohol? Well I would smoke if I could but in this state there is still a big stigma about "mary".Being a business owner and a family man I cant afford to be locked up so I "choose" to drink.Other states make it legal or just a ticket if caught with personable amounts.Some of us know the reason for regulation and it isnt to keep the masses safe from themselves its all about the $$$$ its hard to brew or distill but easy to put a seed in the ground.

wordkyle said...

110 - Prohibition lasted 13 years. Pot has been outlawed for nearly eighty years. Every pot smoker today -- with few exceptions -- started smoking it knowing that it was illegal. What level of judgment is it to start an illegal habit?

Interesting that you reject smoking pot to embrace another substance that contributes no positive value to society. The best that can be said for alcohol is that it is, at this time, legal.

Anonymous said...

"what did that say about consumers of alcohol?"

It said they were knowingly breaking the law and that there were consequences to getting caught.

Anonymous said...

Calling pot a gateway to drug addiction is like calling bread a gateway to obesity.

mzchief said...

So long as there are people, in the US, who believe they have the right to dictate the behaviour of adults; weed, same sex marriage and self-determined euthanasia will be among the things the self-righteous will gladly allow the US government to censor.

Anonymous said...

1:48
The reason prohibition only lasted 13 years was that alcohol was really the only recreational drug at that time that was known by the masses and readily available so therefore there wasnt enough of the population aquainted with as you call it "pot" untill much later in history.Pot is still illegal today because of the money...not the harm it causes to society..if that were the case alcohol would still be illegal it causes far more health issues and is responsible for more lost productivity and deaths than "pot" ever has.Take nicottine for example the government backed tobacco farmers with subsidies untill the health issues and cost outweighed the residual income generated from sales and taxes.If you dont drink I respect that....if you did I would respect that too as long as you did it responsibly.How long did it take for wise county to start cashing in on the alcohol.

This is for you 2:19 did you know that wise county is a dry county yes...still and if you have more than 1/2 gallon of alcohol in your posession your breaking the law...if you dont drink good for you...but how many of your relatives are breaking the law and are criminals lol.

Anonymous said...

I have worked around pot smokers and alchol users. The main difference is pot smokers think they have to do it on the job, and alchol users wait until they are off work. Personally I don't want to be around either one while working. I had a family member who smoked pot, always said they could ouit anytime. He did and moved on to bigger and better things, he also died at the ripe old age of 56. So I don't want to hear your crying about drug laws or pot is not the gateway for other drugs.

wordkyle said...

Many of the arguments regarding government's role I have no argument with. My points are two: 1) The offender made a series of bad decisions that put him where he is; 2) Society is not particularly well-served by making another recreational drug easier to obtain.

Anonymous said...

This is all so confusing. I decided not to work today because, well, because I don't really have a job. Some greaser named Jose took my job nailing 2x4's together. It seems he does it faster and cheaper than me. That pisses me off so all I could think to do was buy weed from his brother and eat them Cheetohs I bought with my food stamps. That should keep me busy until the welfare check gets here. Then I'm gonna get a pound of good bud and go sell it down at the day care school. Maybe I'll make enough money to get me some heroin cause that's what I really like. I'm just so tired of Cheetohs. But now spring is coming and I don't know if I can afford to have Jose's cousin come mow my yard this year. I could try to get some disability or maybe slip on some lettuce and sue Walmart. That might generate some fast cash if the damn lawyers don't cheat me out of most of it. And if I get sick before The president gets me some free health care I might have to rob the Allsups to pay for some Vicodin. That's about the only thing that works for me but those greedy doctors want me to pay them some constipation fee to get a scrip. I just don't understand what ever happened to freedom in this country. I heard the socialists were taking over or trying to liberalize us but they won't tell you the truth on the news since it started coming out in that Hi-Def thing on my big screen.

So my question is why ya'll are so concerned about this dodo that got some prison time for something that he probably did anyway when I got real problems right now. Why don't you help me out first and then worry about him. I don't even know his name. Is he from here?

Anonymous said...

WK--

I agree with you on many things. This is not one of them.

I do appreciate your courtesy in debate. But dude, you're wrong on the not legalizing it. You do have some valid points on choice however.

Anonymous said...

Folks - do you realize the pot IS legal in 10 to 15 states at this time? The amount you may posses varies greatly and in most cases you need some superficial medical reason but it is LEGAL. This guy made a big mistake by not moving to a more enlightened area of this country.

wordkyle said...

507 - Thanks for the kind words. I'll admit that I don't know what would happen if they legalized pot. But neither does anyone else. My instincts tell me that there are unforeseen consequences to legalizing a recreational drug with detrimental, but no beneficial (outside medical) effects.

Would proponents be as enthusiastic if the active drug (THC) were delivered in a pill or liquid form instead of smoking it? Is it the drug itself you guys want, or is there something about the smoking part that creates such dedicated fans?

Anonymous said...

4:52
Some one who abuses.. abuses.I have worked around both and dont want to work around either on the job...the one smoking on the job or the one who is still drunk and hungover till noon the next day from the night before..sorry for your family member who could not show restraint..but that shouldnt penalize the rest of us...so with that said I really dont want to hear your crying about about our discussion:)
4:54
My point is if the stigma was lifted and the powers that be would repeal what I call "self serving laws" the guy wouldnt have been in that situation in the first place...forerunners like alaska, colorado and california are paving the way maybe texas will have enough since to get on the road.
Sometimes it just aint about society its about a little pleasure derived for yourself after you have served society:)

wordkyle said...

728 - Are you actually playing "what if" to relieve the guy of responsibility for his actions? Did his dependence on pot force him to put aside good judgment and make the series of stupid decisions that put him in jail? That in itself is an argument against legalization. Another is the contortions proponents such as yourself will go through to illustrate that "it's not his fault."

Anonymous said...

7:52
I am not trying or suggesting anything really ..you are taking care of that.The guy hadnt been in any major trouble for over 20 years and I cant speak for his characture because I dont know what his prior felonies were for.I am talking about how severe the punishment for a relatively small amount of pot.And if one person being careless is grounds to make something remain illegal then everything would be illegal.And no matter how you misconstrue the paradigm with slight of word the fact remains the same.It should be legalized ...its a huge burden on tax payers to process users in the system..and it being illegal denies the civil liberty rights of those who wish to use it.Life Liberty and the Persuit of Happines and a Big Fatty would make me happy right now:)

Anonymous said...

Barry, I wonder if you could tell us a percent of how many in Texas prisons for marijuana?
Everyone is talking about "it is illegal" -- so is crossing the border without the proper papers, so is teenage smoking - but at the mall you see children smoking, Officers walk right by them...
God made this weed, and man made it illegal, but man made beer & alchol is legal?????

Anonymous said...

I'll bet he won't be doing that again.

Cathy said...

That is just crazy. I don't understand how a judge could give a sentence like that. A interesting read is Refer Madness they have a few stories about similar cases with long sentencings.

Anonymous said...

~~ONWARD THRU THE FOG~~

Anonymous said...

7:28
I was not crying abuse of any kind is bad. your comment about me in the discussion shows just how stupid pot users are

Anonymous said...

Pot head!

Anonymous said...

:)