Drug War Chronicle #477 - March 16, 2007

1. Book Offer: Lies, Damn Lies, and Drug War Statistics

An important new book debunks literally years of statistical legerdemain by the nation's central drug policy office -- and is DRCNet's latest premium for our members.

2. Feature: Medical Marijuana Bill Passes New Mexico Legislature, Awaits Governor's Signature

Despite an apparent vote to kill it last week, the New Mexico legislature has now passed a medical marijuana bill. It awaits only the signature of Gov. Bill Richardson, a strong supporter, to become law.

3. Feature: Trouble Hits in Peru This Week Over Coca Eradication

The Peruvian government's US-backed forced coca eradication campaign is running into serious problems in the Upper Huallaga Valley. Clashes with police, roadblocks, and a general strike have all broken out in the past few days.

4. Drug War Chronicle Book Review: "Lies, Damned Lies, and Drug War Statistics: A Critical Analysis of Claims Made by the Office of National Drug Control Policy," by Matthew Robinson and Renee Scherlen (2007, State University of New York Press, 268 pp., $27)

At one time or another, all of us have sputtered into our coffee cops over some outrageous claim made by the drug czar's office. Now, a pair of academics have systematically deconstructed those claims, and the results are highly illuminating.

5. Quote of the Week: Sen. Jim Webb on the Incarceration Crisis

Criminal justice reformers appear to have a new advocate on Capitol Hill...

6. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

An Oregon parole officer, a former Wisconsin prosecutor, a Houston crime lab tech, and a pair of New Haven narcs have all crossed over to the dark side this week.

7. Medical Marijuana: Federal Appeals Court Rules Angel Raich Can Be Prosecuted, Even If Only Marijuana Keeps Her Alive

Even terminally ill medical marijuana patients in states where it is legal are not protected from federal prosecution, a federal appeals court has ruled in a case brought by Angel Raich.

8. Sentencing: Tyrone Brown is a Free Man!

Tyrone Brown is a free man! He walked out of prison in Texas Thursday after receiving a conditional pardon 17 years into a life sentence for violating probation by smoking pot.

9. Harm Reduction: Los Angeles County Okays Needle Exchange Program

The County of Los Angeles has approved a $500,000 needle exchange program in a bid to slow the spread of AIDS and Hepatitis B and C.

10. Medical Marijuana: Federal Judge Dismisses Charges Against Ed Rosenthal

A federal judge has gutted a federal re-indictment of "Guru of Ganja" Ed Rosenthal on medical marijuana cultivation and related charges, citing "vindictive prosecution."

11. Search and Seizure: Utah Supreme Court Holds Mere Odor of Marijuana Not Enough for a Warrantless Home Search

The Utah Supreme Court has ruled that the mere odor of burning marijuana is not sufficient justification for police to enter a residence without a search warrant.

12. Medical Marijuana: Minnesota Bill Approved by House Committee

With sister bills moving in both the state House and Senate, Minnesota could be on the way to becoming the 13th state to recognize medical marijuana.

13. Marijuana: Grassroots Protest in Small Town Wisconsin After Drug Bust

When home town police in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, busted a bunch of 20-somethings over small-time marijuana and pill sales, some local residents cheered. But in an example of grassroots activism, others took to the streets to protest.

14. Australia: NSW Greens' Call to Decriminalize Drug Possession Causes Pre-Election Stir

With state elections just 10 days away in Australia's New South Wales, the Green Party's call to decriminalize drug possession is causing a stir.

15. Weekly: This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

16. Announcement: DRCNet Content Syndication Feeds Now Available for YOUR Web Site!

Support the cause by featuring automatically-updating Drug War Chronicle and other DRCNet content links on your web site!

17. Announcement: DRCNet RSS Feeds Now Available

A new way for you to receive DRCNet articles -- Drug War Chronicle and more -- is now available.

18. Job Listings: MPP, Minneapolis and DC

The Marijuana Policy Project has two new jobs available -- Information Technology in Washington and Campaigns Analyst in Minneapolis.

19. Job Listing: Syringe Exchange, Harm Reduction Coalition, California

The Harm Reduction Coalition seeks a person for their Syringe Exchange Program Specialist position in California.

20. Announcement: New Format for the Reformer's Calendar

Visit our new web site each day to see a running countdown to the events coming up the soonest, and more.
Permission to Reprint: This issue of Drug War Chronicle is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

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