Law enforcement prepares for marijuana legalization

Author: Annie Bishop, KXLY4 Reporter ,
Published On: Dec 05 2012 11:53:53 PM PST
Law enforcement prepares for marijuana legalization
SPOKANE, Wash. -

With recreational marijuana now legal in Washington, police and pot smokers are still trying to navigate what it all means.

Under the new law, you can possess and purchase up to an ounce of marijuana.  But, it's still illegal to sell it. And, you can't smoke pot in public places.

"The idea of smoking marijuana in public, they shouldn't be doing it and if we deal with them they could get a ticket," Sean Whitcomb with the Seattle Police Department said.

"'It's not something we are looking for and in fact the joke might be that if you've got a guy drinking a beer on one corner an a guy smoking a joint on the other we're going to go after the beer drinker first, marijuana is still our lowest priority by city ordinance," Whitcomb added.

Washington State University and the University of Washington both announcing they will not tolerate drugs on campus.

"What would happen is it would put at risk a lot of federal funding that we receive we receive a lot of our research funding, our students receive federal pell grants. we are obligated under federal law to insure there are no drugs on campus," Norm Arkans with UW said.

The U.S Department of Justice issued a statement Wednesday reminding people it is still illegal to buy, sell, smoke and possess the drug under federal law.