Honestly, how much more difficult could they make it to find weed in San Diego County?
With a vote today by the San Diego County supervisors, a moratorium on new medical marijuana dispensaries in the unincorporated areas of the county will be extended 10 and a half months. Supervisors said the extension will give staff time to develop regulations for the dispensaries which provide pot to people with prescriptions. But critics accuse the dispesnaries of operating as for-profit businesses that attract crime.
Last week, undercover raids at 14 medical marijuana dispensaries ended with 31 arrests. Prosecutors argue those operations were run by drug dealers, many of whom had a criminal past.
After the raids were announced, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis stated she supports the legitimate and legal use of medical marijuana, but says the dispensaries are not legal. "Let me be clear from the start, this investigation has nothing to do with legitimate medical marijuana patients, or their caregivers," Dumanis said.
That support wasn't felt by the dozens of people who marched through downtown Wednesday protesting last week's raids.
The group stopped at the Hall of Justice criticizing Dumanis for the raids. Some held signs calling for a grand jury investigation.
“We as patients are tired at how we’ve been treating in San Diego,” said protestor Rudy Reyes. "This is a wrong. Everywhere else in the state this is not the issue. Everywhere else in the state people like me don't need to do this. But the fact is here we are in San Diego where we are being persecuted and it's wrong."
Volunteers say the recent raids were unnecessary and that the dispensaries are abiding by the law. “We have a lot of patients that are ailing and they need medicine and that’s what we are here for, doing this, doing the right thing by what the voters of San Diego, California decided on,” marijuana dispensary volunteer Booker Sanders Jr. said.
Law enforcement seized marijuana at each location, more than $70,000 in cash and six guns. An initial review of the records at one dispensary reveals that more than $700,000 in income was generated in the past six months through the selling of marijuana and marijuana-laced products.
Medical marijuana was legalized 13 years ago when voters approved Proposition 215.