Drug DUI's Don't Appear To Be On the Rise Following Legalization - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Drug DUI's Don't Appear To Be On the Rise Following Legalization of Pot

KENNEWICK, Wash. - It's been two months since Washington voters approved Initiative-502, legalizing marijuana.

One of the main arguments for people opposing the Initiative was the danger of more stoned drivers on the road. According to Washington State Patrol, the number of drug DUI's between December 6th and January 6th are actually down from the same time last year.


"It's early since the law passed so it's hard to know how this is really going to play out but the early signs, I guess, are encouraging. Hopefully people are being responsible in how they consume marijuana and if this trend continues, that would be great," said WSP's Lt. Mike Saunders.

There were 30 fewer drug DUI arrests in Washington from the time marijuana was legalized and that same time the year before. Additionally, the state toxicologist said she hasn't seen a spike in positive blood tests for THC (the chemical that gets you high in marijuana) since the beginning of December.

"We've been trained to recognize impairment by drugs for many years now. We've been enforcing that so it doesn't really change our enforcement efforts a lot. We've been prepared for this," said Saunders.

"It's very apparent that more people are smoking. It's very obvious when I have eight to ten phone calls a day asking if we're going to sell marijuana or if we do sell marijuana," said Hippies owner Tim Adams.

Adams said his store will never be a dispensary but with or without supplying the green, his business has blossomed. 

For one local drug counselor, legal pot merely gives his clients more reason to resist treatment.

"I'm seeing a stabilization of patients who have in the past were using marijuana and now they're thinking that it's okay to use," said Thomas Hamman of Changes and Choices.

Hamman said he hasn't seen an increase in patients since marijuana was legalized in Washington but he does expect a lot more people to suffer from a lack of motivation... a prominent side affect of using the drug.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane neighbors shocked after dogs pepper sprayed

    Spokane neighbors shocked after dogs pepper sprayed

    Sunday, September 24 2017 9:08 PM EDT2017-09-25 01:08:37 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Two families are still left shocked after they say someone sprayed their dogs with pepper spray. This happened on Saturday night around 9 p.m. near Hays Park. Eric Eitzman says he was inside his home when he heard his dog and his neighbor’s dogs start barking. He opened the door and his dog ran inside. That’s when his daughter grabbed the dog and said she smelled.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Two families are still left shocked after they say someone sprayed their dogs with pepper spray. This happened on Saturday night around 9 p.m. near Hays Park. Eric Eitzman says he was inside his home when he heard his dog and his neighbor’s dogs start barking. He opened the door and his dog ran inside. That’s when his daughter grabbed the dog and said she smelled.

    >>
  • One killed, two injured in Highway 195 crash south of Rosalia

    One killed, two injured in Highway 195 crash south of Rosalia

    Sunday, September 24 2017 3:19 PM EDT2017-09-24 19:19:33 GMT

    ROSALIA, Wash. - Washington State Patrol reports one person is dead after a crash on Highway 195 Saturday night.  It happened around 10:30 p.m. about one mile south of Rosalia. Troopers say a 2002 Chevrolet Blazer driven by 36-year-old Joshua J.Kenyon was northbound on 195 and a 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe, driven 37-year-old Angela C. Pressnal, was headed southbound on the highway.

    >>

    ROSALIA, Wash. - Washington State Patrol reports one person is dead after a crash on Highway 195 Saturday night.  It happened around 10:30 p.m. about one mile south of Rosalia. Troopers say a 2002 Chevrolet Blazer driven by 36-year-old Joshua J.Kenyon was northbound on 195 and a 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe, driven 37-year-old Angela C. Pressnal, was headed southbound on the highway.

    >>
  • Jury: Former Spokane deputy guilty of stealing federal funds

    Jury: Former Spokane deputy guilty of stealing federal funds

    Sunday, September 24 2017 1:02 PM EDT2017-09-24 17:02:05 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - A former Spokane County Sheriff's deputy has been convicted of lying to fraudulently obtain federal assistance. The Spokesman-Review reports that a jury on Friday found former Spokane County Sheriff's jailer Donald B. Henderson guilty of stealing roughly $650,000 from the Social Security Administration and the Department of Veteran Affairs for more than a decade.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - A former Spokane County Sheriff's deputy has been convicted of lying to fraudulently obtain federal assistance. The Spokesman-Review reports that a jury on Friday found former Spokane County Sheriff's jailer Donald B. Henderson guilty of stealing roughly $650,000 from the Social Security Administration and the Department of Veteran Affairs for more than a decade.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/