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Law enforcement cracks down on marijuana offenders

By KTVM Staff
Published On: Jan 02 2013 08:02:56 PM MST
BOZEMAN, Mont. -

Bozeman police tell us law enforcement agencies statewide are cracking down on marijuana. Montana sits between two states that recently legalized marijuana for recreational use.

We wanted to know if local officers are concerned that relaxed regulations in Washington and Colorado could lead to an increase in marijuana moving through Montana.

Non-medical marijuana does find it's way through Montana says Deputy Police Chief Rich Mclane.

"We suspect there maybe movement of Marijuana through the state would not necessarily be legal here but maybe legal in other states."

Interstate 90 flows from Washington through Idaho and into Montana and connects with I-25 in Wyoming which is a major route for folks headed north out of Colorado.

In the November election voters in Colorado and Washington passed new laws legalizing recreational marijuana use for people over 21.  In Montana any possession of marijuana with out a medical prescription is illegal said McLane.

"If you've got it and you're not supposed to have it, we remove it from you , and you get charged with a misdemeanor or felony depending just how much you have on you."

Mclane said Bozeman does regularly see illegal marijuana use, but it's not a major problem.

"Is it a huge epidemic, no, is it illegal and a problem at times absolutely."

Deputy Chief McLane said he doesn't think legalization in other states in region will change the way police enforce marijuana laws here.

"Other states around us not really impacted by law enforcements approach in this particular city."

Deputy Chief McLane said folks driving through will need to remember they'll be held to the same state law as residents.