Synthetic Marijuana has Pasco Sheriff’s Attention
Chris Nocco is sending a letter to hundreds of convenience stores in Pasco County warning them about the penalties for selling the manmade drug.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s called Spice, K2 or synthetic marijuana: Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco calls it illegal.
To that end, he’s sending out a letter dated today to hundreds of convenience stores throughout the county. The letter describes the penalties for selling products that contain ingredients banned by the Florida Legislature. It also reminds store owners that the sheriff’s office plans to check stores to make sure they’re following the law.
Do you think synthetic marijuana is a problem in Pasco County? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
Here’s a copy of the sheriff’s letter, which was posted on the agency's Facebook page:
To all Pasco County Convenience Businesses:
This letter is to inform you that the Florida Legislature recently amended the Florida State Statutes that outlaw the possession of certain chemicals in synthetic marijuana (commonly referred to as “Spice” or “K2”). Many companies that manufacture and distribute these items changed the chemical makeup of the items so they did not violate the previous Florida law. The legislature has now expanded the list of banned chemicals to include the items the companies were using in an attempt to circumvent Florida law.
The Florida Statutes listed below list the chemicals that are now outlawed (F.S. 893.03) and makes it a third-degree felony to possess or sell items that contain these chemicals (F.S. 893.13); the law also makes it a second-degree felony for any person over the age of 18 to deliver items that contain these chemicals to a person under the age of 18 (F.S. 893.13):
Florida Statute 893.03 (1)(c): “Unless specifically excepted or unless listed in another schedule, any material, compound mixture, or preparation that contains any quantity of the following hallucinogenic substances or that contains any of their salts, isomers, and salts of isomers, if the existence of such salts, isomers, and salts of isomers is possible within the specific chemical designation:” The statute then lists one hundred and forty-two (142) chemicals that are illegal to possess, sell, manufacture or deliver.
Florida Statute 893.13(1)(a)(2): “Except as authorized by this chapter 499, it is unlawful for any person to sell, manufacture, or deliver, or possess with intent to sell, manufacture, or deliver, a controlled substance. Any person who violates this provision with respect to:(2) A controlled substance named or described in s. 893.03(1)(c)…commits a felony of the third degree…”
Florida Statute 893.13(4)(b): “Except as authorized by this chapter, it is unlawful for any person 18 years of age or older to delivery any controlled substance to a person under 18 years….Any person who violates this provision with respect to: (b) A controlled substance named or described in s. 893(1)(c)…commits a felony of the second degree…”
The new law went into effect on March 23, 2012 and all one hundred and forty-two (142) substances listed in F.S. 893.03(1)(c) are now illegal. The Pasco Sheriff’s Office will be conducting checks on stores through the county to ensure these illegal items are not being made available to the public. The Pasco Sheriff’s Office therefore advises you to dispose of these substances according to law and to cease selling these items in your businesses.
On a personal note, I can tell you that these substances are destroying families, harming our youth, and have added to the crime in our community. If you have any questions regarding the information contained in this letter, please contact the Vice and Narcotics Unit of the Pasco Sheriff’s Office at (727) 834-3237 (west Pasco) or (352) 518-5070 (east Pasco).
Sheriff of Pasco County