Wisconsin police prepare for Illinois pot legalization
KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) – Illinois’ marijuana market opens in less than a week. Wisconsinites will be able to cross the border to purchase marijuana, but they won’t be able to legally bring any back.
"Marijuana is illegal in Wisconsin,” said Wisconsin State Trooper Tigran Grigoryev.
That makes marijuana enforcement pretty black and white in this state. Grigoryev said if a police officer finds someone with it, “It’s going to be taken.”
He said not to expect roadblocks at the state line, but do expect police to be aware of marijuana from Illinois.
“It’s seen, regardless of where it comes from,” said Grigoryev.
Police will be watching for impaired driving. But any type of traffic violation can lead to a search for drugs. The Packers' Za’Darious Smith was pulled over in September for speeding, but officers also filed marijuana possession charges against him after he admitted to smoking earlier in the day and officers found more marijuana in the car.
“If there’s an odor of a substance like that, the car is going to get searched,” said Grigoryev.
While law enforcement has concerns about marijuana and crime moving from a state where it is legal, to where it is illegal, a recent federal study did not find evidence of that happening.
Illinois’ marijuana limit for out of state residents offers Wisconsinites a small reprieve. Depending on which law enforcement jurisdiction they get caught in, a violation could lead to a ticket rather than a day in court.