Police Chief Says Voters Should Not Ease Up on Pot Law

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) -- The police chief in Michigan's second-largest city opposes a ballot question that would make marijuana possession a civil infraction in Grand Rapids, not a misdemeanor crime.

Grand Rapids Chief Kevin Belk says young people won't benefit by making it easier to use marijuana. He compares it to the new Michigan law allowing fireworks, a law that boosted demand -- and complaints.

Grand Rapids voters will decide in November whether to make marijuana possession akin to a traffic ticket. Mayor George Heartwell and former Mayor John Logie are in favor.

Belk says marijuana use can eliminate job opportunities. He says easing the penalty for marijuana possession won't ease the workload of his officers. Belk says marijuana often is discovered during investigations of other crimes.

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  • by Jerome McCollom Location: Grand Rapids on Sep 19, 2012 at 10:49 PM
    Yes, it is is so much better there lives are destroyed by being caught with a drug less harmful than alcohol.
  • by Berny Location: my couch on Sep 16, 2012 at 11:04 PM
    what other drugs do they find while investigating other crimes? i bet most people have asprin, nyquil and vicks in the medicine cabinet....what's the difference? i'd imagine alcohol caused more "other crimes" and that doesn't slow down it's distribution in the least bit. If the police chief went home each night and "chiefed" one with his wife, instead of a drinking a scotch and soda, his improved sex life and open mind might allow him to enjoy his workload more often. although, pampering to the uptight,bible-thumping constituents such as grand rapids' city councel- would prolly rub cheech and chong the wrong way by the end of the day! smoke 'em up johnny...law! let adults make their own choices, be fair with substance prohibition. please don't let the notion of "potheads" breaking all kinds of laws, such as "junkies" doing anything under the sun in order to get their fix, even be remotely related. in this day and age it is silly to think cannabis users are "real criminals"
  • by Matt Location: perry on Sep 16, 2012 at 12:10 PM
    I just noticed the time this story was posted. Powerful, you bunch of savages.
  • by B Location: Lansing on Sep 15, 2012 at 06:54 PM
    Sounds like a typical, ignorant, hard headed cop. Legalizing pot absolutely would not increase teen use. I don't know why these fools think that, because it's quite to the contrary. Dispensaries check IDs, street dealers don't. Aside of the fact that WHO CARES??? Pot has never ever in the history of mankind hurt anyone. It's not addictive, it's not a "gateway drug". To be against it is just simple ignorance, period.
  • by Bob Location: Lansing on Sep 15, 2012 at 04:12 PM
    Sounds more like "reefer madness" than real truth.First of all,the Michigan law was/is way to vague and it seems everyone needed,for whatever reason, "pot" for medicinal purposes. Second of all, yes, it seemed everyone had fireworks to light off this year but it was the first year and it seems to have slowed down considerably. Limiting the sale of these two items would put things back to a managable level
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