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Has Arizona's Medical Marijuana Gone Smoke Only?

Published: Monday, July 2, 2018 - 6:08pm
Updated: Tuesday, July 3, 2018 - 2:58pm

One of the architects of Arizona’s medical marijuana law expects a recent ruling by the State Court of Appeals to be overturned. The decision, handed down last week, decreed that other forms of cannabis, including hashish, oils and edibles, are not protected under the 2010 law.

The ruling also threatens to make criminals out of Arizona’s medical marijuana patients if they consume the drug in other ways besides smoking it. And it upholds the conviction of a patient who was sentenced to two and a half years in state prison for possessing a small amount of hashish he acquired at a dispensary.

But perhaps not for long. 

“I suspect we’re going to see this for sure go to the state Supreme Court shortly,” said Will Humble, former director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, who helped implement the voter-approved law.

“I think they’re actually going to overturn this appellate court decision because to me it’s pretty clear that the intent of the voters was to include extracts and resins in the protected types of marijuana that are covered under the act.”

It’s estimated that 40 percent of the medical marijuana sold in Arizona is in the form of products that have been created with resin, which the appeals court has ruled is not protected.