Police Chief Rails Against Pot Legalization

OCEAN CITY – You hear about it in California, but in Ocean City?

Legalizing marijuana was briefly discussed during this week’s Police Commission meeting and along with it came a loud and clear message.

Ocean City Police Chief Bernadette DiPino brought to the commission’s attention the legislation initiative of legalizing medical marijuana in California.

“Being active with the International Association of Chiefs of Police that was one of the things we are very strongly against,” DiPino said.

According to DiPino, recently 26 states have now had medical marijuana on the legislative agenda in upcoming discussions. The Maryland Chief of Police Association have heard the “pros and cons” of legalizing the drug.

“I just wanted to bring it to your attention that it is something that I am defiantly against, and the department is against, and I think most law enforcements you’ll find is against,” DiPino said.

The chief said the subject would be on the radar in upcoming legislative sessions.

“It is something that is quite controversial,” DiPino said. “There is a lot of money that is backing the push for this…it is something that we are going to be actively opposing.”

DiPino explained that the areas in Canada and California that have legalized medical marijuana have stores that sell it with a doctor on location writing prescriptions.

“It isn’t being used for logistical medical uses that it is intended to be,” she said. “So that is where the concern is for the law enforcement community.”

The commission agreed that legalizing medical marijuana would never happen in this town.

“Just fight it,” Council President Jim Hall concluded.