Is it hemp or is it marijuana? That is the question. It can actually be pretty confusing but law enforcement officers ought to be able to discern the similarities and differences between the two to be able to effectively enforce laws governing these.
Leading this webinar’s discussion is Bill Loucks. Bill retired from the law enforcement profession where he spent a significant portion of his career as a gang and narcotics detective and working undercover and testifying for gang and drug-related cases. Bill is currently an instructor and course developer for the North Carolina Department of Justice’s Justice Academy (NCJA).
Topics Bill covered in this course include:
- The pivotal 2018 Farm Bill which removed hemp from the Federal Controlled Substances and became listed as an agricultural commodity instead.
- Differentiating hemp vs. marijuana by looking into the plant source and the concentration of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
- Some of the things and issues that law enforcement must know and may encounter with hemp grow sites.
- The licensing requirement for hemp grow sites and how to counter-check the license validity by looking into the licensing database.
- How the license may not be physically in the grow sites and how the properties where the grow sites are situated are not necessarily under the licensee’s name.
- How the people physically in the grow sites may be employees or subcontractors and not necessarily be the licensee.
- The background check an individual must go through before being issued a license.
- Differentiating the various hemp and hemp-derived products through their appearance and cannabinoid content.
- A brief run-down of products in the market that contain hemp or CBD.
- The reality that visual recognition is tricky and the different factors to consider as part of the totality of circumstances when making determinations whether a product is legal hemp or illegal marijuana.
- The products’ labeling, packaging and QR code that provides a link to its Certificate of Analysis (COA) that indicates the THC percentage.
- Past history of calls for service, warrants, and other incident reports.
- The time and day, location, plain view and plain smell, and statements or interviews.
- What law enforcement should familiarize with and look for.
- The grow site’s license, its coverage, and who to coordinate with for licensing questions.
- The grow site database, how to access it and make searches, the information available, and whether it is up-to-date.
- What a grow site looks like, the volume of the plants, and whether it will be indoors or outdoors.
- What hemp looks like during harvesting paying attention to storage, the smell, and the volume of the product.
- Hemp during transport – storage and labeling, license and notification required for transport, and its volume.
- Hemp processing facilities – registration of facilities and what to expect in one in terms of equipment, raw materials, and resulting products.
- Inter-state shipping of hemp products.
- Sale of hemp products in various commercial establishments.
- The importance of fostering relationships with the hemp growers and vendors to gain more knowledge.
- Case studies that demonstrate how a lack of knowledge on the difference between hemp and marijuana can turn into a liability for law enforcement agencies.
Questions from the audience are on:
- License requirement for marijuana and hemp.
- The need to still distinguish between the two for states where recreational marijuana is legal.
- Different hemp products and variants other than the delta-9 THC.
- The potential of federal legalization of marijuana.
- Field test kits that can be used to determine whether a product is within the THC percentage threshold for hemp.
Other Webinars with this Presenter:
- Hemp for Law Enforcement (this webinar)
- July 27: Hemp for Probation and Parole
- “Great speaker!” — Wilson
- “Really enjoyed the information about the different issues that law enforcement is challenged with in dealing with hemp vs. marijuana. Also, what to look for when it comes to trying to determining what the difference is between hemp and marijuana.” — Rebecca
- “Excellent info.” — Robert
- “This hemp webinar helped in understanding the difference between marijuana and hemp. Speaker Bill Loucks was EXCELLENT!” — Mary
- “Learning about hemp growers was fascinating. I am looking forward to researching the indicated topic further. Very interesting.” — Monique
- “Can’t wait for the 27th for Probation and Parole training with this guy. What a wealth of knowledge he is.” — GENE
- “Excellent information provided by the presenter. Thank you.” — ELVIN
- “I found every aspect of this training helpful as I have not received any training on hemp and what to look out for.” — Derek