Ambitious Park County Attorney Brett Linneweber of Livingston apparently is using his elected position for brownie points with the feds. November 13, 182 marijuana plants were seized from a Livingston home. Using the typical “seize now, ask questions later” policy, Linneweber said that he had yet to be able to determine whether the plants were legal under state law because “other matters have taken priority”. Although there is a state registry available to law enforcement 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, he has been too busy to determine the legality of the plants? A simple phone call takes too long? He hasn’t had time since November 13?
Never mind anyway. Linneweber also stated that if he does find that the grow was legal under our state law, he will simply turn the investigation over to the federal government who would certainly find it interesting that anyone would dare grow so many plants under STATE laws allowing it. In addition, officials seem to be deferring to I-148 as parts of SB-423 are caught up in litigation. From the Livingston Enterprise:
The deputies took the plants because even if they turn out to be legal under Montana’s medical marijuana law, federal law prohibits growth and use of the drug, Linneweber said Friday.
Montana’s medical marijuana law — parts of which were revised by the last Legislature and are now caught up in litigation — permits use of the drug in some instances.
Given the current state of that law being caught up in court, law enforcement is referring to limits set by the previous state law, Linneweber said. That law stated a patient could have up to six mature plants for personal use and that medical marijuana providers could have up to six plants per patient.
Given those limits, the number of plants found in the Green Acres home makes it unlikely that the grow was legal, Linneweber said. And even if it’s found to be legal under Montana law, marijuana is still banned under federal law, he said.
While marijuana is prohibited under federal statutes, the Obama administration has said it won’t make prosecution of medical marijuana a priority.
Linneweber said local law enforcement officials typically defer to Montana rules regarding amounts of allowable marijuana rather than the federal law, which would permit no marijuana possession. But the number of plants found in the home Sunday is significant and likely is something federal agents would want to know about, he said.
“On 182 plants, it’s very rare that a provider … is entitled to have that many plants,” he said. “Further, the feds are generally interested in pursuing (an investigation in a case involving) that amount.”
Linneweber said that if the seized marijuana turns out to be legal under Montana law, he plans to refer the case to federal agents.
Who does Park County Attorney Brett Linneweber work for anyway? Elected county officials are under no obligation to assist federal agencies in investigations for federal crimes that are legal under state law. I would consider any such activity to be wanton waste of local funds and blatant disregard of state law. Please call County Attorney Linneweber to ask him why he is ignoring Montana voters. Contact information available below.