Court: OK for Trooper to Seize Dirty Bong 

  Court: OK for Trooper to Seize Dirty Bong 

Posted by FoM on December 01, 2000 at 17:24:39 PT
By Associated Press 

It's not illegal to simply own a bong, or water pipe, but a dirty bong was enough to land a woman in trouble, the state appeals court ruled Friday. The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled in the case of a woman who was stopped for speeding in September 1998 in Stockbridge. A state trooper looked into the woman's car and saw a bong and that the clear plastic device had some kind of residue in it. 
He seized it, smelled marijuana, searched the woman's entire vehicle and then found a box of marijuana seeds. At Sharon E. Dolby's trial in Sothern Berkshire District Court, she moved to have the seeds thrown out as evidence, arguing they had been found as a result of an ''unlawful search and seizure.'' The district court judge agreed, saying ''bongs are bought, sold and possessed legally every day throughout the Commonwealth; and the mere possession of a bong does not rise to probable cause that any particular possessor of a bong is also in possession of marijuana.'' But a three-judge panel of the appeals court said ''the sight of the bong with the residue in the chamber which (the trooper) reasonably believed was derived from marijuana provided the trooper with probable cause to seize the bong. After the trooper smelled the residue and determined that it smelled like burnt marijuana, he had probable cause to search the vehicle.'' The 11-page opinion was written by Justice Gerald Gillerman. Source: Associated PressPublished: December 1, 2000© Copyright 2000 Boston Globe Electronic Publishing, Inc. CannabisNews Paraphernalia Archives

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Comment #15 posted by defenderoffreeworld on December 02, 2000 at 20:16:31 PT:


don't blame the person for driving around with a bong in the car. it can happen to anyone. you never know when cops are going to stop you. the fact of the matter is that they originally stopped the person for speeding. so how can they end up charging her with posession of paraphinilia and seeds? they originally stopped her for speeding and that's that. at that point, there was no reasonable doubt that the person was involved in any other illegal activities. think about it this way. what if the cops search your house mistaking it for someone elses, like they do all the time, and then they find some erb. does this give them a right to convict you for it, even though when they saw it, they suspected you? no, because you weren't supposed to be searched in the first place. the same as with this woman. 
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Comment #14 posted by Frank on December 02, 2000 at 15:13:10 PT

Smoking a Bong is Safe: Antidepressants are Not.

Smoking pot in a bong is much safer than drugs such as imipramine. I have suffered from depression for years and I was prescribed imipramine once. As a result I entered one of the most hellish addictions that I can't even put into words. Imipramine is so addictive and the aftermath of taking it is hell itself. When I stopped taking it my skin turned brick red, I vomited constantly and felt hot and cold for months. I could not sleep for days at a time and I lost 30 pound of body weight in a single week. It took a full six months before I felt the addiction begin to lift and a full two years to recover. But the government thinks this is ok. And they say pot is addictive? Take Imipramine every day for six months and then stop it and you will find out what addiction is. Of couse the doctors and drug companies say that antidepressants are not addictive --- bull S%$#. They lie. It's 19 years later and that addiction still is fresh in my mind. It was byond belief. 
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Comment #13 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on December 02, 2000 at 14:25:27 PT

Dirty Cops

  OK, minor legal/semantic quibbling thing that's been bugging me. When the police bust you for possession - of whatever - and they confiscate it... aren't THEY then in "possession" of the article and violating the law? Why can't someone who's just had their goods confiscated write the police a citizen's arrest ticket for possession?  And this article raises another question. What if I'm moving? Am I supposed to leave the old bong at the new apartment and buy a fresh one for my new place?  Throw your un-needed seeds onto your local prohibitionist's front lawn...
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Comment #12 posted by Ben Cohn on December 02, 2000 at 13:39:32 PT:

Dictionary Bias

dddd wrote:"As I reviewed my ramblings,I decided to see what my Websters New American Dictionary had for a definition of "drug".I was sorta surprized to see how deeply ingrained the mythical demonization of marijuana is."While this is somewhat true across the board, it is especially true of the Webster's series of dictionaries. They also have extremely biased definitions of hallucinogens and other drug substances.I like the Random House dictionary. There's a much more neutral flavor to their definitions.Vote with your dollars and your pen. Write the Websters people and tell them you won't but their biased products.PeaceBC
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Comment #11 posted by Michelle on December 02, 2000 at 12:10:11 PT

supreme court

I also think that the fact that dying people have to get permission to use marijuana is a joke. The government says that people who are in pain, who are going to die anyway, can only use marijuana under supervision, but they allow equally dangerous drugs to be advertised on television every day. It is a very valid point that many weight loss drugs have been known to cause addiction,liver damage, etc. Yet these drugs are hailed as 'perfectly safe miracles'.If they can legalize medications that cause damage to people, why not at least legalize a drug that causes less damage, but provides relief for those in pain?
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Comment #10 posted by STORMRIDER420 on December 02, 2000 at 10:56:16 PT:

re: Throw this one in the 'hanging chad' pile!

I agree based on the fact that most all marijuana users are law-abiding, job holding, tax paying people. Should one person or group of people (cops, judges, the legal system in general) be able to tell us what we can and can not do as long as we do not break any laws? Should they be able to put us in jail for using a harmless herb? Should we have to pay taxes which pay their salaries just to get harassed by them? We pay their salaries with our tax dollars! We should have say in laws. We should at least be able to come to an agreement on the issue of legalization. Say perhaps we would get it legalized with the terms that you are not allowed to possess paraphenalia while in a moving vehicle and if you cause a wreck or are driving dangerously, then they have the right to fuck with you. Until then, they should leave you alone entirely when it comes to use and/or posession.
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Comment #9 posted by dddd on December 02, 2000 at 09:49:19 PT


 Thanks for the link,It is astonishing. I'm sure there are hundreds of "legal"pharmaceutical drugs that have nightmarish side effects,and gruesome withdrawals.It seems the closest we come to ever hearing anything bad about these legal dopes,,,is the silly little messages that are required to be discreetly tucked into the end of all the TV drug ads......I love it,and I cant believe they actually got away with forcing them to do it.   Stuff like;"Paxil is not for everybody,some people experience headaches,nosebleeds,sleeplessness,sexual problems......My favorite was a baldness pill ad that was on a few years back,Propecia?,,,,anyway,one of the disclaimers was "do not come into contact with pills if you are pregnant" And I could go on and on.It's sort of a sick hobby for me,to dazzle myself with quickly and quietly spoken statements at the end of a commercial that say stuff like;"side effects were very rare,similar to a sugar pill". It's totally bizarre,and completely unacceptable that drug companies can market,and legally sell these Frankenstonian potions for conjured up maladys such as;"Social Anxiety Disorder",aka SAD,,,or even(believe it or not);"General Anxiety Disorder",or GAD,,and no one really bats an eye. But when state voters decide to let people who are in pain,and dying smoke weed,well then we have to go to the supreme court,to make sure it's OK.....the whole thing is so obviously ridiculous,and absurd,,that I gotta laugh,because if I couldnt laugh,I'd have to Freak Out.......dddd 
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Comment #8 posted by Mota on December 02, 2000 at 09:14:39 PT


Glad to see Paxil mentioned on this board. Take a look at this brutally addictive, legal drug which is pushed on television. shame that this is only a civil matter. Lots more references under "paxil addict". The legitimate drug companies, with their manufacture of some of the drugs mentioned by dddd, are clearly catering to antis with sleazy drugs that mimic some of the effects of illegal drugs so that drug warriors too can get high - and become addicts. Hypocrisies within hypocrisies.If your car is clean, always carry a clean bong in plain sight. It's a nice day for standing in the sun and breathing fresh air.
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Comment #7 posted by Dan Hillman on December 02, 2000 at 07:56:55 PT

If you're going to drive around with a bong...

...make it a "camo-bong". That's bong that's made out of a small plastic soft-drink bottle, stem and bowl. The bottle has cuts for stem and carb. I used such a bong for years (before switching to vaporizers) and many times people would look directly at it without ever seeing that it was a bong. The camo-bong also allows you to change the disposable part (the bottle) for freshening.
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Comment #6 posted by dddd on December 02, 2000 at 04:38:24 PT

not too smart

 Yup,it's true Dan,this gal was not too brite. I guess this reveals something,that I think we often lose sight of here.Many commentaries we post here,in response to articles,,,speak of the sheer idiocy of the anti mindset,and rightfully so...However,in all fairness,we must admit that there are numerous idiots,and/or challenged thinkers on our own side. I think most would agree that "drugs",are not necessarily "good".From my point of view,marijuana is not a "drug",it is an herb.It should never have been termed a "drug". As I reviewed my ramblings,I decided to see what my Websters New American Dictionary had for a definition of "drug".I was sorta surprized to see how deeply ingrained the mythical demonization of marijuana is. Here's the definition of "drug";1:a substance used as or in medicine.2:a substance (as heroin or marijuana) that can cause addiction,a marked change in mental status,or psychological dependancy. This goes to show how far reaching the lies and misinformation about marijuana have gone...There it is,in Websters dictionary;"heroin or marijuana". No mention of Paxil,or Valium,or Vicoden,or Claritin,or Ritalin,or...... Astonishing and disturbing.......ramblin' on..................dddd
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Comment #5 posted by Dan B on December 02, 2000 at 03:27:30 PT:

I Have To Agree, dddd... would seem to be common sense that driving around with a dirty bong in one's car is a rather stupid thing to do, and the woman can't have been thinking very hard about what she was doing. One the one hand, I feel sorry for her, getting caught and all. On the other, it kind of makes me laugh at the stupidity of being caught that way in the first place.Dan B
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Comment #4 posted by dddd on December 01, 2000 at 23:53:12 PT


 Gotta admit,if you wanna go out for a drive to the store,or anywhere else,and you have a bong in the car,and you have enjoyed the use of the bong,,you would be well advised to leave the bong at home. How could you blame Joe Cop,after pulling you over for speeding,and smelling that special "pungent"odor,and then finding a bong,with fresh stinky bong residue water and deposits,for attempting to bust your ass? I'm certainly not arguing in favor of prohibition,or law enforcement rights,but if you were a cop,and the main part of your job was to bust people who are doing stuff that is illegal,,,then as ridiculous as it may seem,a stinky,residue laden bong would be hard to ignore. From now on,I bet this person will leave the bong at home.I'm all in favor of freedom,but driving around taking bong hits is not a good thing.....dddd
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on December 01, 2000 at 21:48:50 PT

My 2 cents

I had to laugh a little too. I guess the lesson is after you get a bong don't drive around with it in your car if you've used it. It's like an open container when you think about it. With all the important things going on that they should pay attention to they pay attention to a bong. Unbelievable.
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Comment #2 posted by freedom fighter on December 01, 2000 at 21:41:58 PT

Had to smile

It was a perfect example of how stupid these people are!I got raided recently. Cops found two bongs. One they decided was used for pot and another, I guess, they decided was used for tobacco. I had to laugh.
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Comment #1 posted by legalizeit on December 01, 2000 at 18:18:54 PT

Throw this one in the 'hanging chad' pile!

Looks like another vague area of the law. At least one judge ruled in favor of sanity! Trouble is, the judges who have the final say in most cases like this are the biggest, most anal-retentive prohibnazis the legal system has to offer.The cops bend their power enough already, and when they go ever further over the line, it's time to say Enough!! Enough harassing innocent people and taxing our legal system over a PLANT!
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