Attorney: 'Cannot tell the difference' between pot, hemp

Attorney: 'Cannot tell the difference' between pot, hemp

Updated:
LUBBOCK, Texas -

Governor Abbott sent a letter to Texas District and County Attorneys. The letter reported that some DA's won't prosecute misdemeanor marijuana cases, and it urged them to continue to properly execute the law. 

The new hemp law requires producers to be state licensed and test their products to ensure 0.3 percent or less THC concentration. Stephen Hamilton, a defense attorney, said since hemp and marijuana come from the same plant, it's tough for police to tell the difference between the two. 

"You cannot tell the difference of the smells. This issue of smelling the odor of marijuana is tough because you can't tell if it's marijuana you're smelling or if it's hemp," Hamilton said. 

Hamilton said since most labs in Texas can't test THC levels, it makes it tougher to prosecute pot crimes. 

"Let's say Lubbock wants to prosecute one, well right now they can't test it and they need a Pennsylvania lab to test it. Let's say it's above 0.3 percent. They now need to call that lab technician from Pennsylvania to fly down to Lubbock," he said. 

Hamilton added Abbott is expecting a lot from the state. 

 "His directive to prosecute cases is one of those unfunded mandates. He's saying to go out and do all of this stuff even though we won't give you any money and we aren't going to support you. We won't have anything for the labs to be able to test but go out and do it," Hamilton said.

Edward Wharff, with the D.A.'s office, was happy to see the letter. He doesn't expect any tough adjustments when the law goes into effect.

"There's always a learning curve when the laws change. The last few years, gun and knife laws have changed and there was a little bit of a learning curve and I'm sure there will be one with this as well," Wharff said. 



  • Top StoriesMore>>

  • Luck announces retirement following Colts loss to Bears

    Luck announces retirement following Colts loss to Bears

    Saturday, August 24 2019 10:21 PM EDT2019-08-25 02:21:38 GMT
    Sunday, August 25 2019 7:41 AM EDT2019-08-25 11:41:34 GMT
    (AP Photo/Michael Wyke, File). FILE - In this Jan. 5, 2019 file photo Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) throws against the Houston Texans during the first half of an NFL wild card playoff football game in Houston. The popular pick to win ...(AP Photo/Michael Wyke, File). FILE - In this Jan. 5, 2019 file photo Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) throws against the Houston Texans during the first half of an NFL wild card playoff football game in Houston. The popular pick to win ...
    (AP Photo/Michael Wyke, File). FILE - In this Jan. 5, 2019 file photo Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) throws against the Houston Texans during the first half of an NFL wild card playoff football game in Houston. The popular pick to win ...(AP Photo/Michael Wyke, File). FILE - In this Jan. 5, 2019 file photo Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) throws against the Houston Texans during the first half of an NFL wild card playoff football game in Houston. The popular pick to win ...
    Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is planning to retire according to a report from ESPN.
    Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is planning to retire according to a report from ESPN.
  • Major carriers, state AGs will work to combat robocalls

    Major carriers, state AGs will work to combat robocalls

    Thursday, August 22 2019 2:31 PM EDT2019-08-22 18:31:40 GMT
    Sunday, August 25 2019 7:31 AM EDT2019-08-25 11:31:40 GMT
    (AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File). FILE - In this Aug. 11, 2019, file photo, a man uses a cell phone in New Orleans. Major phone companies are telling the country’s state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls. It’s the latest step from g...(AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File). FILE - In this Aug. 11, 2019, file photo, a man uses a cell phone in New Orleans. Major phone companies are telling the country’s state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls. It’s the latest step from g...
    (AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File). FILE - In this Aug. 11, 2019, file photo, a man uses a cell phone in New Orleans. Major phone companies are telling the country’s state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls. It’s the latest step from g...(AP Photo/Jenny Kane, File). FILE - In this Aug. 11, 2019, file photo, a man uses a cell phone in New Orleans. Major phone companies are telling the country’s state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls. It’s the latest step from g...
    Major phone companies are promising the country's state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls.
    Major phone companies are promising the country's state attorneys general that they will do more against robocalls.
  • 75 years later, US World War II veterans say: Never forget

    75 years later, US World War II veterans say: Never forget

    Saturday, August 24 2019 2:31 AM EDT2019-08-24 06:31:35 GMT
    Sunday, August 25 2019 2:41 AM EDT2019-08-25 06:41:53 GMT
    (AP Photo/Peter J. Carroll, File). FILE - In this Aug. 29, 1944 file photo, U.S. soldiers of Pennsylvania's 28th Infantry Division march along the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe in the background, four days after the liberation of Paris, France. T...(AP Photo/Peter J. Carroll, File). FILE - In this Aug. 29, 1944 file photo, U.S. soldiers of Pennsylvania's 28th Infantry Division march along the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe in the background, four days after the liberation of Paris, France. T...
    (AP Photo/Peter J. Carroll, File). FILE - In this Aug. 29, 1944 file photo, U.S. soldiers of Pennsylvania's 28th Infantry Division march along the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe in the background, four days after the liberation of Paris, France. T...(AP Photo/Peter J. Carroll, File). FILE - In this Aug. 29, 1944 file photo, U.S. soldiers of Pennsylvania's 28th Infantry Division march along the Champs Elysees, the Arc de Triomphe in the background, four days after the liberation of Paris, France. T...
    U.S. World War II veterans are back in Paris to celebrate the anniversary of the liberation of the French capital from the Nazis.
    U.S. World War II veterans are back in Paris to celebrate the anniversary of the liberation of the French capital from the Nazis.
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2019 RAMAR. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.