New Study: State Crime Labs Receive Incentives for Guilty Verdicts

A new study published in the journal Criminal Justice Ethics has found that many state crime labs receive financial incentives for guilty verdicts, creating an environment where false-positive testcrimelab results are beneficial to the lab conducting the tests, leading to the wrongful conviction of countless individuals.

According to the study’s abstract; “The American criminal justice system creates incentives for false conviction. For example, many public crime labs are funded in part per conviction.

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WA Proposal to Defelonize Simple Drug Possession to be Filed in Upcoming Legislative Session

A recently-announced proposal in Washington State to defelonize simple drug possession has garnered a primary legislative sponsor, State Representative Sherry Appleton, and will be formally filed in the upcoming legislative session, which begins in January.swlogo In addition to Representative Appleton, Representatives Joe Fitzgibbon, Jim Moeller (Speaker Pro Tempore) and Chris Reykdal have all signed on as cosponsors, with “more to be announced soon”, according to the nonprofit organization Sensible Washington, the group behind the effort.

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Study Finds Acupuncture Works by Activating Cannabinoid Receptors

A recent study published by the National Institute of Health has found the first clear evidence that acupuncture activates cannabinoid receptors, which likely plays a vital role in the procedure’s ability to reduce pain.Tapping in acupuncture needle

While studying mice subjects, researchers “found that repeated EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Kunlun (BL60) acupoints resulted in marked improvements in thermal hyperalgesia. Both western blot assays and FQ-PCR analysis results showed that the levels of CB1 expression in the repeated-EA group were much higher than those in any other group (P = 0.001). The CB1-selective antagonist AM251 inhibited the effects of repeated EA by attenuating the increases in CB1 expression.”

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Kentucky Hemp Farming to Begin Next Year, Says Agriculture Commissioner

In April Senate Bill 50 became law in Kentucky, ending the state’s prohibition on hemp, while making state-licensed cultivation contingent on a change in federal law. Now that the Obama Administration hashemp announced that they won’t enforce federal law in states where cannabis has been made legal, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and the Agriculture Department’s attorney Luke Morgan stated today that this allows the state to move forward with licensing hemp producers; Comer will push for the state to begin licensing by the year’s end, with legal hemp cultivation beginning next year.

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Department of Justice Working to Allow, Regulate Transactions Between Banks, Cannabis Stores

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder told the governors of Washington and Colorado in a phone call Thursday that the Departmentbill-gives-states-marijuana-tax-power-thcf of Justice is “actively considering” ways to explicitly allow, and regulate transactions between banks and cannabis retail outlets in states where they’re legal.

This consideration, which will come as a surprise to many, is in huge contrast to current DEA policy which warns banks against transacting with marijuana businesses.

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Harvard Study Finds Cannabis Cuts Tumor Growth in Half in Three Weeks

A Harvard study from 2007 which remains the most comprehensive ever released on THC’s potential to combat tumors found that in just three weeks doses of THC were able to cut lung cancer tumor growth in half in mice subjects, and were able to reduce cancer lesions by even more. Harvard study

For the study, Harvard researchers tested THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which is found naturally in cannabis) on cancer cells in labs, and followed that up by studying mice subjects.

The lab demonstration found that doses of THC inhibited growth and spread in the cancer cells; “When the cells are pretreated with THC, they have less EGFR stimulated invasion as measured by various in-vitro assays,” states Anju Preet, PhD, who was one of the researchers for the study.

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Wisconsin Medical Cannabis Legalization Measure Announced

State Representative Chris Taylor and Senator Jon Erpenbach have announced that they’re working on legislation to legalize medical cannabis, which they plan to have filed in the upcoming fall legislative session. marijuanawisconsin

Under the soon-to-be-filed legislation, authorized patients would be allowed to possess up to 3 ounces of cannabis, and cultivate up to 10 plants. State-licensed ‚Äúcompassionate care centers” would be authorized to distribute cannabis to patients.

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New Poll Shows More Maine Voters Support Legalizing Marijuana Use Than Oppose

New research has found that more people in Maine support legalizing cannabis use than not. Recently Publ6.11-meic Policy Polling surveyed roughly 1,000 registered Maine voters and found that 48% of respondents felt marijuana use should be legal – only 39% said it should remain illegal, and 14% were not sure how they felt about the subject.

Read moreNew Poll Shows More Maine Voters Support Legalizing Marijuana Use Than Oppose

Initiative to End Cannabis Prohibition Announced in Oregon

New Approach Oregon – in collaboration with the Drug Police Allianceannounced today that they’re drafting an initiative to end cannabis prohibition in Oregon, with the aim of putting the proposal to a vote in 2014.weedcrystal

“Our coalition is moving forward with a legalization measure to end cannabis prohibition in Oregon in the 2014 election”, said Anthony Johnson, Director of New Approach Oregon, which helped to introduce the legalization measure House Bill 3371 this year, which passed out of its initial committee in April, though eventually stalled.

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An Updated, State-By-State Look at Cannabis Reform Across the U.S.

A lot has changed since we last published an overview of cannabis law reform in the U.S., as activists all across the country continue to push the conversation, and policies forward.hemp leaf

As we continue onward in a year which has been historic for cannabis reform, here’s an examination of reform occurring across the United States; take note of the fact that the Obama Administration announced today that they won’t overturn cannabis legalization in states that decide to take that approach, such as Colorado and Washington.

Read moreAn Updated, State-By-State Look at Cannabis Reform Across the U.S.