Drugs, Lawyer of the Day, Marijuana, New Orleans, Police, Ridiculousness, Screw-Ups

Prosecutor Drops Joint in Court, in Front of Cops; Promptly Curses the Day He Was Born

I realize, as a San Franciscan, my views on marijuana are somewhat out-of-the-ordinary relative to many other Americans. More specifically, San Franciscans as a group tend to forget pot is illegal at all.

But maybe we ain’t as crazy and/or progressive as we’d like to think of ourselves. Case in point: a prosecutor down south was busted this week when a joint fell out of his pocket — in court, while he was chatting with a police officer. Whoops!

The New Orleans Times-Picayune describes the hilariously uncomfortable scene that unfolded yesterday at the Orleans Parish magistrate court, but first, let’s hear from an amused tipster:

As a New Orleans native, I have long suspected that more than 50% of the city — and its employees, specifically — are, at any given time, either stoned, drunk, or on a three hour lunch.

This is another piece of evidence confirming my suspicious[.]

I mean, why not all three? There”s nothing better than eating when you’re under an altered state of consciousness, amirite?

Anyway, 43-year-old Jason Cantrell, an assistant city attorney and son of Magistrate Commissioner Harry Cantrell, was talking to a New Orleans police officer when a joint fell out of his pocket. He was cited for simple possession of marijuana, and he has been suspended without pay, pending a department investigation.

Cantrell should have more carefully checked his pockets before heading to court that day. At least it looks like, for better or worse, everyone (except Cantrell) is looking at the situation with the appropriate humor:

[NOPD spokesman Officer Garry] Flot said Cantrell was talking to an officer when the joint flew.

Sources painted a comical picture of the incident, saying a pair of cops glanced at the joint on the ground, then at each other before making arguably the easiest collar in the annals of policework.

Officers were seen chuckling as their colleagues led Cantrell out of the courtroom about 4:15 p.m. to write him up.

On one level, what a silly thing to potentially lose your job over. On the other, how can the government prosecute marijuana cases with anything resembling a straight face when their own attorneys allegedly get high too?

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen something like this either. A Texas judge got in even more trouble when he was caught with 20 grams of weed in his hotel room.

Even Lat — a former prosecutor, definitely not your clichéd stoner type — is intrigued here. He says: “Seems to me that maybe we should decriminalize marijuana if even government attorneys are being accused of these offenses.”

Seriously! Because everyone knows, you can’t have your cake and smoke it too.

New Orleans assistant city attorney cited for marijuana violation, butterfingers [New Orleans Times-Picayune]

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