PIQUA — Piqua Chief of Police Bruce Jamison is standing with other law enforcement executives in Miami County who oppose the current attempts to legalize marijuana in the state of Ohio.
“If there’s a good way to legalize marijuana, Issue 3 is definitely not it,” Jamison said in a statement released on Wednesday. “I stand with law enforcement executives across the state in urging a ‘Yes’ vote to Issue 2 and a ‘No’ vote to Issue 3.”
According to the press release, the Miami County Police Chief’s Association is made up of the sheriff and all police chiefs in Miami County who “meet together regularly to discuss issues of mutual concern.”
“I’m not convinced that Issue 3 is an effective way to introduce any medical or legal use of marijuana into our society,” Jamison said in an interview later on Wednesday.
When asked his opinion on what would happen to the community should Issue 3 pass, Jamison said, “I think we would be almost immediately affected by people beginning to use it, grow it.” Jamison said that he believed that the city would also see a higher use of the drug among juveniles.
“Even if they’re not smoking it, there would be … consumables,” Jamison said. “It would be hard for parents to even be tact(ful) with their child who had begun to consume marijuana with some of the products we expect to see if this is passed.”
Jamison also expressed his concern about how the legalization of marijuana could affect the workplace, including those who work with dangerous or heavy machinery.
“I’m worried about the workplace, the safety of the workplace,” Jamison said. Jamison stated that if marijuana gets legalized and people decide to use marijuana more often and more openly, it could then affect their ability to operate machinery in business.
Jamison stated that he is also concerned for the business owners who may have a harder time keeping the workplace safe.
Overall, Jamison believes that the community will be safer if Issue 3 does not pass.
Jamison also made it clear that the Piqua Police Department “respects the electoral process and appreciates the serious consideration voters are extending prior to casting their ballots.”
Jamison also provided a statement that the Miami County Police Chief’s Association unanimously adopted in reference to state issues 2 and 3.
“This issue will create a legalized drug cartel,” the statement says. “This means they will operate a monopoly on marijuana sales in Ohio. Issue 2 will stop the monopoly process if Issue 3 passes.”
The Miami County Police Chief’s Association also claims that Ohio will see an increase in marijuana-related vehicle crashes along with a rise in other crimes should Issue 3 pass. Jamison explained that marijuana use can affect reaction times, judgment, and motor coordination.
The Miami County Police Chief’s Association also pointed out that their local law enforcement efforts are not focused on seeking out marijuana smokers.
“Our enforcement efforts have been primarily on harder drugs, like heroin or cocaine for a number of years,” the statement says. “Our prisons are not full of people that were caught holding small amounts of marijuana.”
According to the Miami County Police Chief’s Association, there are “very few” people incarcerated in Ohio’s prison for the primary offense of possessing marijuana. They stated that law enforcement gets involved with a marijuana user or dealer due to the individual making “themselves known to us by violating laws.”
The statement also goes on to say that legalizing marijuana will not solve the United States’ drug issues. They write, “Beyond this proposal, look south of our border into Mexico. Drug cartels in Mexico, who ship thousands of pounds of marijuana to the United States each year have made a several billion dollar profit from users in North America.”
“So, our answer is to legalize marijuana and that will solve our drug issues? This argument doesn’t make sense,” the Miami County Police Chief’s Association continues. “Cartels already have figured out that there are States willing to legalize marijuana and this will take some of their profits. Instead, they began sending heroin to our country to poison our communities.”
The Miami County Police Chief’s Association goes on to point out that convicted felons will be allowed to own their own marijuana shop and there will be no regulations for mixing marijuana into candies or food products. According to the Miami County Police Chief’s Association, the average THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol, the principal psychoactive element of marijuana) levels in edible foods or products can be as high as 12-15 percent.
According to the Miami County Police Chief’s Association, “modern processing of marijuana has made the potency of it much higher than what was previously accustomed to in the 1970’s as an example.” They state that hybrid versions of marijuana, some of which include extracting oils from the plants, can have THC levels that reach as high as 90 percent.
The Miami County Police Chief’s Association expressed concerns for how the legalization of marijuana will affect families, businesses, those seeking jobs, and the community in general. They stated that the following organizations also support voting “yes” on Issue 2 and “no” on Issue 3: Ohio School Boards Association, Ohio State Medical Association, Ohio Manufacturers’ Association, Ohio Farm Bureau, Ohio Prosecutors Association, Ohio Coroner’s Association, Ohio Chamber of Commerce, Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, the Ohio Fraternal Order of Police, Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association, Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police, the Drug Free Action Alliance, and more.
Reach reporter Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall