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Can Marijuana Legally Be Smoked In Public?

Can Marijuana Legally Be Smoked In Public?

Can Marijuana Legally Be Smoked In Public?

Back in 2016, Californian voters chose to approve the legalization of the recreational use of marijuana. The law went into effect at the start of 2018, and so for the last two years, people have been able to enjoy marijuana recreationally. However, even though marijuana usage has been legal for 2 years, there is still a lot of confusion around the law.

Two years isn’t a lot of time in legal terms. Many of the laws that people are familiar with have been around for decades, which is why people are so familiar with them. Since the marijuana laws are so new, the general public hasn’t had enough time to get to know every single detail, leaving some people still confused.

Where Can Marijuana Be Smoked?

One of the biggest questions people still have is where can marijuana legally be smoked and consumed now. Even though the usage of marijuana has been legalized, there are still restrictions on where it can be used. When people aren’t aware of these restrictions, they can find themselves in trouble with the law.

The laws surrounding marijuana usage are practically identical to the laws surrounding alcohol and cigarettes. A person can get a good understanding of when and where marijuana can be consumed by looking at those regulations.

Since smoking cigarettes is banned in most businesses and public areas, smoking marijuana is also banned in those areas. Just like people have a right to not be exposed to secondhand smoke from cigarettes, they also have the right to not be exposed to marijuana.

The usage of marijuana is banned on all government property, especially schools. Employers are permitted to keep their workplaces marijuana free just like they can keep them alcohol-free. They also are legally allowed to test their employees for marijuana.

Marijuana also cannot be consumed while a person is in a car, especially if they are driving. A person cannot consume or have an open container of alcohol in their vehicle, so they cannot do the same with marijuana.

The biggest thing to note about the legalization of the recreational use of marijuana is the recreational part. Primarily, a person is only allowed to consume marijuana in places where they would normally relax, such as their home or backyard.

Penalties For Using Marijuana – Where It Is Prohibited

The penalties for misusing marijuana in California can vary greatly depending on where the person consumed marijuana. If a person smokes or consumes marijuana at their job, where it is banned, they may not face legal consequences, but they could be fired.

If a person is caught with marijuana on school grounds, they could be charged with a misdemeanor that comes with:

  • Up to 6 months in jail.
  • A max fine of $250 for a first offense.

Simply having an open container of marijuana in a vehicle can get a person charged with an infraction that comes with a fine of up to $100.

If a person is charged with DUI, then they could face:

  • Up to 6 months in jail.
  • A max fine of $1,000.
  • Up to 9 months of DUI school.
  • A 4 month driver’s license suspension.

Be Considerate Of Others

It is important to remember that while the recreational use of marijuana has been legalized here in California, it is still illegal at the federal level. This means that even if a person follows all of the rules laid out in the state legislature, they could still be arrested at the federal level. Luckily, this is unlikely to happen unless a person is doing a lot of illegal things with marijuana or they bring it onto federal property. Some common examples of federal property include airports and federal government buildings.

The recreational use of Marijuana was legalized to allow people who wanted to consume it to do so in ways that don’t bother other people. Most people do not enjoy the smell of marijuana and would prefer to not have to smell it when they are out in public. Then there is the fact that no one wants their kids exposed to marijuana.

If a person is wondering if they can have marijuana in a certain area, such as a public park, they should think about whether cigarettes or alcohol are allowed there. Most parks ban smoking, so that includes marijuana.

 

What Are The Consequences Of Hit And Run?

What Are The Consequences Of Hit And Run?

What Are The Consequences Of Hit And Run?

The last thing that anyone wants to happen while driving is getting into an accident. Not only are accidents very dangerous to a person’s health and safety, they can be very costly as well. Whoever is at fault, or responsible for, the accident can end up paying a whole lot of money in damages and reparations. Due to this, a lot of people are afraid to get into an accident, which has led to problems.

Some people are so afraid of getting into trouble for causing an accident, that they will flee the scene of an accident. This is called hit and run and it is very illegal. When a person is involved in a car accident, they are expected to stay at the scene and do everything that they can to help anyone who may be hurt. Failing to do so can result in severe consequences for the person that ran.

What Is Hit And Run In California?

In the state of California, the crime of hit and run is laid out under two laws, Vehicle Code 20001 and Vehicle Code 20002. Vehicle Code 20001 focuses on when people are injured or killed while Vehicle Code 20002 focuses on when property is damaged. Under these laws, a driver is required to stop their vehicle and administer aid whenever they are involved in a car accident that causes property damage or injury.

This means that after an accident, any driver who was involved in it must stop as soon as reasonably possible. They then must apply aid to any injured persons. They are also required provide personal and contact information to the owners of any damaged property, to any injured person or to any law enforcement agents on the scene. Lastly, they need to notify emergency services as soon as possible.

If a driver fails to do any of this, they could be charged with hit and run, even if they stopped and administered aid. A person could also be accused of committing hit and run for hitting a parked car and not leaving any contact information for the owner.

Hit And Run Consequences

When a person commits hit and run, they become guilty, whether or not they were actually responsible for causing the accident. This means that running from the scene of the accident can make things a whole lot worse than just staying at the scene and applying aid where needed.

Under Vehicle Code 20002, the consequences of hit and run that results in property damage is a misdemeanor offense. It comes with:

  • Up to 6 months in jail.
  • A max fine of $1,000.

Under Vehicle Code 20001, hit and run that results in injury or death is a wobbler offense, meaning it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the facts of the case. When charged as a misdemeanor, a person faces:

  • Up to 1 year in jail.
  • A fine from $1,000 to $10,000.
  • Misdemeanor probation.

A felony charge can come with:

  • Up to 4 years in jail.
  • A fine from $1,000 to $10,000.
  • Felony probation.

What To Do If You Witness A Hit And Run

When people witness an accident, especially a hit and run, they may feel compelled to chase after the fleeing vehicle. However, the larger priority is to take care of the victims of the accident. They could be severely hurt and their health and wellbeing is the priority.

After witnessing a hit and run, immediately call 911 and try to provide as much information about the fleeing vehicle as possible to the operator. This includes things like:

  • The license plate number.
  • The vehicle’s make and model.
  • Description of the damage on the vehicle.
  • Which direction the vehicle fled.
  • Location, time, and cause of the accident.

The police can use this information to track down the suspect on their own.

Don’t Run From An Accident

Getting into an accident can be terrifying, and most people would prefer to not deal with scary things. However, running from the scene of an accident instantly makes a person guilty. Fleeing the scene makes things a whole lot worse for a person, which is why it is best to stay and do everything to help out after an accident.

What do you think of California’s laws on hit and run?

Are they too strict or not harsh enough? Let us know what you think in the comments down below.

 

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