ODESSA, Texas (BIG 2/ FOX 24)- A house bill which legalizes Hemp was signed into law this month. It states that if someone has cannabis containing less than .03% THC, they aren’t breaking the law.
Bobby Bland, the Ector County DA, says, “it’s created a problem in proving the percentage in court. We’re going to have to get a new test to put in place and new training for the people doing the test so we can prove that what we have is what they consider marijuana and not hemp.”
Midland County DA Laura a. Nodolf saying they weren’t given the proper tools from the state to do the test that would determine whether the substance found was legal or illegal.
“Let’s find a roadside test, let’s find a way to look at it microscopically who knows, whatever it is give us time to actually process the bill.”
Many District Attorney’s around Texas were just dismissing cases. The State now sending out a directive telling DA’s to not dismiss them.
“Nobody from the State should be telling anybody how to prosecute their cases. They have to make a decision based on the area they live in,” says Bland.
Midland County DA says for now if someone is arrested it’s up to them to provide evidence.
“People can provide evidence that its hemp, and that is why it becomes a defensive issue, just like self-defense, it’s an issue that the defendant himself would have to raise.”
According to the Midland County DA that would be in the form of a test, receipt, or hemp packaging. The Ector County DA going a slightly different route saying “right now if we feel like the case needs to be prosecuted right away, that this person needs to be held accountable right away, we’ll send the evidence to Pennsylvania and have them test it and then get the results and move forward on the case.”