Former Drug Investigator Promotes Decriminalization of Drugs In Florida

Neill Franklin, a former undercover drug investigator from Maryland and executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, is publicly advocating for decriminalization of drugs to curb crime and dangerous addictions. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition is a decade-old non-profit that promotes a stop to the “War on Drugs”, based on the belief that current drug policies fail to address problems of drug abuse. Franklin says legalizing and regulating drugs will save law enforcement time and money, as well as potentially create a profit for government.

Marijuana, also known as weed, pot, bud, ganja, hydro, trees, chronic, and the natural name “cannabis”, as well as other concentrated forms such as hash, is one the most popular recreational drugs in Florida. One of the most common marijuana charges in Jacksonville is misdemeanor or felony possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia associated with its use. However, findings from a People United poll showing seven out of 10 Floridians would support a constitutional amendment to support legalizing marijuana for medical use, may mean a change for Florida’s current drug laws. imagesbudbowl.jpg

As time and society has progressed, the knowledge obtained about substances and their benefits, as well as their detriments has grown tremendously. Some substances obviously serve no useful benefit to the human body and as such, have been reasonably prohibited. However, as science’s ability to understand what natural elements might help produce a reasonably desired result with little harmful effect increases, society’s fear or lack of understanding of “drug” benefits may begin to diminish.

Marijuana, like any drug, legal or illegal, when used improperly can have dangerous consequences, both short term, in cases involving car accidents or other vehicular related charges that might be the result of being “high”, but also long term consequences such as throat problems and lung issues. However, there are many all throughout Jacksonville and across the nation that use marijuana strictly for medicinal purposes.

A good example of such a medicinal user may be seen in a new bill being proposed to the Florida legislature but John Morgan. Morgan is proposing the bill as a means for those who have cancer, major pain that might require relief in the same form as would someone using prescription narcotics, or for simply loss of appetite due to old age or other medicines that cause appetite loss.

In Morgan’s particular case, his father suffered from emphysema and cancer, and as a result of the number of prescription medicines he was on at the end of his life, he lost his appetite; Marijuana gave him some relief by giving him his appetite back, as well as probably relieving some of the pain that cancer does cause.

Even though the bill is being introduced, one must still be aware that currently, Florida’s marijuana laws are some of the strictest in the country for possession. If one is caught in possession of more than 20 grams of marijuana in Jacksonville, one may be charged with a third degree felony, exposing one to a possible five year prison sentence. Not only might one possibly have a marijuana conviction on one’s record, but one can also expensive fines, in addition to a mandatory driver’s license suspension for two years, as customary with a drug related offense.

The current marijuana laws may change, but until that time, if one is charged with a marijuana related offense, one may be facing an uphill battle. Sometimes a juvenile is arrested; sometimes an elder. No matter the case, if one obtains an experienced Jacksonville drug crimes defense attorney, one’s attorney will fight the case by filing an appropriate motion to suppress any illegally obtained evidence if one was arrested due to an unreasonable search and seizure by law enforcement, and will make sure that one’s ability to re-obtain one’s freedom will not be hindered.


The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for years and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.

Additional Source: Retired cop: Legalize drugs to cut crime, addiction Stacey Barchenger, Florida Today