What to say to the police if they’ve pulled you over for cannabis use

Published Jun 11, 2019 12:56 p.m. ET
Credit: Nomadsoul1

With recent marijuana legalization in Canada making it legal to possess, how to buy weed, and consuming recreational cannabis. It is, however, illegal to drive with THC in your system. The police check for THC in your system, due to its ability to alter one’s mental capacities, that can lead to driving unsafe.

It can happen, you notice the flashing colored lights in your rear-view mirror, you are getting pulled over by the police. You have just left the cannabis dispensary. Right away questions could be running through your head, what do you say, what are your legal rights, and what should you do?

• The first thing to do is to relax. Don’t presume, how do you know you are being pulled over for cannabis use?
• Pull over safely to the side of the road when you see those flashing lights
• Remain in the car, roll down the window and keep both hands on the steering wheel
• Be polite and follow the officer’s requests
• You can refuse a search of your vehicle
• You can request that a lawyer is contacted

The police cannot pull you over unless they have a reason. The law states that the police must have a probable cause to execute the pulling over of your vehicle.

Reasons for police pulling someone over:

  1. Investigating a traffic law
  2. Reason to believe you have committed an offence

The traffic-law reasons are:

To check that you have valid documents, you must provide:

• Driver’s license
• Proof of insurance
• Vehicle registration
• The police also have the authority to check that the vehicle is in good working condition.
• Administer breath test to check for alcohol impairment
• Administer a Standardized Field Sobriety Test

So, what do you say to the officers, the law of the country, protects you from saying anything unless you choose to speak to the officers, you must, however, provide the documents in a courteous manner? Point to remember, anything you say can be used as evidence if you were charged with a criminal offence.

Should the officer believe that you are under the influence of cannabis, they have the right to perform a basic sobriety test at the roadside. If they feel you are impaired by the use of cannabis or any other drug, they can take you to a police station for further testing. Current testing is incorporating the use of saliva to test the level of THC in your system.

Cannabis dispensaries are legal means for how to purchase your weed. By the law, the marijuana dispensary is permitted by law to sell you 30 grams maximum. Remember, after purchasing your marijuana to store it in a safe, legal manner as required.

Your purchase should be in the trunk of your car for safe passage yours and any passengers that you have in your car. This way, if you are stopped and checked for cannabis, you are following the marijuana legislation to the tee, and you will not be required to engage in a lengthy conversation with the police officer who has pulled you over if he sees your purchase is within reach of the driver.

Remember being polite, and courteous to the officer, whether you speak or not is the best way to handle the situation. A job is a job, and safety comes first. Enjoy Responsibly.

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