Minnesota Lab Figures Out How to Tell Between Legal Hemp and Illegal Marijuana
by Dale Chappell
Medical marijuana is legal in the state of Minnesota, but recreational use is not. This causes problems for the state’s Hemp Pilot program, which licenses growers of hemp as long as the THC concentration stays below 0.3 percent. If the THC is greater than that, it’s considered marijuana, and it constitutes a crime.
“Since a hemp plant and a marijuana plant are the same species of plant, they would yield the same results” in a lab test for THC, the Midwest Regional Forensic Laboratory at the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. “This made our job difficult as we were unable to determine if an item was from a hemp plant or a marijuana plant with our current methods of testing.”
The lab has figured out a way to differentiate the THC in a hemp plant from a marijuana plant.
The new testing method, which went live March 25, 2020, gives law enforcement and prosecutors scientifically valid information that they need to either arrest someone for possessing marijuana or, much more importantly, not to arrest them if they are merely possessing legal hemp.
Since hemp can be used to make everything from food to lotions to sandals, there have been no regulations on the sale of hemp products. Being able to determine the THC purity level of a product gives law enforcement and the public more control over what’s being done with hemp products, some say.
“The Midwest Regional Forensic Laboratory is the first of eight accredited and publicly funded labs” to begin quantitative cannabis testing in the state, according to the publication Forensic.
More from this issue:
- Police State: From Social Justice to Social Dominance, by Michael Fortino, Ph.D
- Sixth Circuit Vacates Firearms Possession Conviction; Government Showed Jury Unauthenticated Prejudicial Facebook Video Not Admitted as Evidence, by Matthew Clarke
- Tenth Circuit: Deputy ‘Trying to Help’ Doesn’t Make Search Permissible Under Community Caretaking Exception to Warrant Requirement, by Douglas Ankney
- Attacking the Guilty Plea: Establishing Prejudice in the Guilty Plea Context, by Dale Chappell
- Report Finds NYPD Officers Accidentally Deploy Tasers 25% of the Time, by Douglas Ankney
- California Supreme Court: § 459.5(b) Prohibits Charging Shoplifting and Theft for Same Property, by Douglas Ankney
- Fourth Circuit: IAC for Counsel’s Bad Advice That Open Plea Would Allow Appeal Denial of Motion to Suppress, by Dale Chappell
- Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court: GPS Monitoring Unreasonable When It Doesn’t Further Any Governmental Interest, by Douglas Ankney
- D.C. Circuit Reverses Nearly 50-Year-Old Murder Conviction Over Faulty Hair Evidence, by Dale Chappell
- Minnesota Supreme Court: Non-Identifying Information About CI Must Be Disclosed Upon Request, by Anthony Accurso
- Michigan Supreme Court Announces Court Must Inform Defendant of Consecutive Sentencing Authority When Accepting Plea, by David Reutter
- Massachusetts Supreme Court: Officer’s Handling of Cellphone Exceeded Scope of Inventory Search, by Anthony Accurso
- Seventh Circuit Reverses Denial of Motion to Suppress Because Police Lacked Reasonable Suspicion to Frisk, by Douglas Ankney
- FOIA Redaction Limbo: How Low They Will Go, by Edward Lyon
- U.S. District Court Chooses Judicial Remedy, Instead of § 2255, to Allow Out-of-Time Appeal, by Dale Chappell
- California Court of Appeal: Trial Court Abused Discretion Denying Compassionate Release Where Statutory Criteria Are Met, by Dale Chappell
- Colorado Supreme Court: Warrant Allowing General Search of Cellphone Unconstitutional Violation of Particularity Requirement, by Douglas Ankney
- Eleventh Circuit Holds Georgia Terroristic Threats Conviction Overbroad for ACCA, by Dale Chappell
- Policing is irrelevant for public safety — but these alternatives are proven to work, by Justin Podur/Independent Media Institute, AlterNet.com
- Myth of Technology as an Equalizing Force in Criminal Justice, by Anthony Accurso
- Kansas Supreme Court: District Court Failed to Apprise Defendant of Right to Jury Trial, by Douglas Ankney
- Fourth Circuit Requests Further Information on Stingray Device to Determine Whether It Violates Fourth Amendment Rights, by Anthony Accurso
- Oklahoma Enacts Jailhouse Informant Law, Joins Other States, by Dale Chappell
- South Carolina Supreme Court Overturns Murder Conviction Where State Presented Improper Testimony Regarding Trace DNA Evidence, by Douglas Ankney
- Iowa Supreme Court Announces That ‘Good Cause’ in Newly Amended Appeals Statute Means ‘a Legally Sufficient Reason’, by Douglas Ankney
- South Carolina Supreme Court: State Cannot Appeal Guilty Plea, by David Reutter
- Two New Forensic DNA Standards Added to the OSAC Registry
- Big Brother, as Well as Big Business, Are Tracking You: the Snitch in Your Own Pocket, Purse, or Belt Holder, by Edward Lyon
- Neuroscience and Criminal Cases, by Jayson Hawkins
- Maine Supreme Judicial Court Vacates Conviction on Double Jeopardy Grounds, by Douglas Ankney
- Eighth Circuit Affirms Habeas Relief Decades After Conviction Because Prosecutor Destroyed Evidence Prior to Trial, by Dale Chappell
- Eleventh Circuit Vacates Firearm Conviction Based on Rehaif, by Douglas Ankney
- Washington Supreme Court: Defendant Detained for Search at Border Was ‘In Custody’ for Miranda Purposes, by Douglas Ankney
- Never Convicted but Never Exonerated, Either, by Edward Lyon
- Fourth Circuit: Erroneous Career Offender Sentence Correctable in First Step Act Resentencing, by Dale Chappell
- Government Study Finds Facial Recognition Sorely Lacking in Accuracy, by Dale Chappell
- Idaho Exoneree Fights for Wrongful Conviction Compensation, by Edward Lyon
- Fifth Circuit Clarifies AEDPA Time Limit Tolling for Louisiana Prisoners Filing Federal Habeas Corpus, by Dale Chappell
- Missouri Shows Indifference to Human Life by Proceeding with Execution Amid Pandemic, by Douglas Ankney
- Dogs Can Detect One-Billionth of a Teaspoon of Gasoline, by Douglas Ankney
- Fulton County Prosecutor in Georgia to Expunge MLK and Other Civil Rights Leaders’ Records, But not Everyone Agrees, by Michael Fortino, Ph.D
- Survey: California Cops Abusing Privacy Rights with Auto Plate Readers, by Jayson Hawkins
- FBI Provides Fitness App in Exchange for Users’ GPS Coordinates, by Douglas Ankney
- Strategies to Help Police Address Citizens With Special Needs, by Anthony Accurso
- Devastating Consequences of Chicago Gang Database – And No Way to Be Removed, by Bill Barton
- New Method to Determine Time of Death for Forensic Investigators, by Kevin Bliss
- Using Doctor-Prescribed Marijuana Could Send Some People Back to Prison, by Douglas Ankney
- Minnesota Lab Figures Out How to Tell Between Legal Hemp and Illegal Marijuana, by Dale Chappell
- Unrest After Kentucky Cops Shoot Sleeping Black Woman to Death in Her Bed While Serving No-Knock Warrant, by Edward Lyon
- Small Forensics Lab Finds Niche in Analyzing Tiniest Bits of Evidence, by Dale Chappell
- $8 Million Settlement for Wrongfully Convicted and Imprisoned Missouri Man, by Kevin Bliss
- Police Use of Robotic Technology Raises Civil Liberty Concerns, by Douglas Ankney
- New York Police Act With Impunity During Protests, by Kevin Bliss
- News in Brief
More from Dale Chappell:
- Attacking the Guilty Plea: Waivers, Breaches, and Getting More Time After a Successful Challenge, Oct. 15, 2020
- Powerful New Tool Reveals Federal Sentencing Problems, Oct. 15, 2020
- Sixth Circuit Finds IAC for Failure to Raise ‘Clearly Foreshadowed’ Change in Law on Appeal, Oct. 15, 2020
- Ninth Circuit: Use of Unconvicted Conduct Too Dissimilar to Charged Offense Violates Due Process, Oct. 15, 2020
- Fifth Circuit Grants Habeas Relief Because Detective’s Testimony of Witness Identification of Defendant Violates Confrontation Clause, Oct. 15, 2020
- Arizona Supreme Court Declares Gang-Association Statute Unconstitutional, Oct. 15, 2020
- First Circuit: Dangerousness of Machine Guns Not Justification for Above-Guidelines Sentence, Oct. 15, 2020
- Fourth Circuit Expands First Step Act’s ‘Covered Offense’ to All of Section 841, Oct. 15, 2020
- Alaska Supreme Court Upholds Dismissal of Delusional Prisoner’s Medical Malpractice Claim, Oct. 1, 2020
- $300,000 a Year Not Enough to Convince Psychiatrists to Work in California Prisons, Oct. 1, 2020
More from these topics:
- Mississippi Supreme Court Vacates Capital Murder Conviction Obtained With Bite Mark Comparison Evidence, Oct. 15, 2020. junk science, Wrongful Conviction.
- The Junk Science Cops Use to Decide You’re Lying, Sept. 15, 2020. junk science, Lie Detector Tests.
- Triaging Evidence Can Lead to Oversights and Misinterpretation, Aug. 21, 2020. junk science, Electronic Surveillance.
- D.C. Circuit Reverses Nearly 50-Year-Old Murder Conviction Over Faulty Hair Evidence, July 15, 2020. junk science.
- Myth of Technology as an Equalizing Force in Criminal Justice, July 15, 2020. junk science, Police State-Surveillance, Social Media.
- South Carolina Supreme Court Overturns Murder Conviction Where State Presented Improper Testimony Regarding Trace DNA Evidence, July 15, 2020. junk science, DNA Evidence/Testing.
- Two New Forensic DNA Standards Added to the OSAC Registry, July 15, 2020. DNA Testing/Samples, junk science.
- Government Study Finds Facial Recognition Sorely Lacking in Accuracy, July 15, 2020. junk science, EP2P Software.
- Dogs Can Detect One-Billionth of a Teaspoon of Gasoline, July 15, 2020. junk science, Drug-Sniffing Dog.
- New Method to Determine Time of Death for Forensic Investigators, July 15, 2020. junk science, Death/Bodily Injury.