January 19, 2012
Councilmember, 7th District
333 W. Ocean Blvd, 14th Floor
Long Beach, CA 90802
Dear Councilmember Johnson:
I read with interest the answer to the question you posed about the general crime effect of
medical marijuana collectives upon the City of Long Beach at the last council meeting. The
nature of the statistics reported in the Grunion Gazette provided no opportunity to analyze
the generalization that the one murder, 54 felonies and 27 misdemeanors were the direct
result of legal marijuana collectives operating in the City, as alleged. Nor did the article
indicate whether those crimes were committed last week or over the 15 years that medical
marijuana has been permitted by law in California.
As you know, “statistics” especially “crime statistics” are often used to support scare tactics
used by those whose prohibitionist agendas continue to fight against the will of the people
rather than use the power and authority of their office to accommodate and implement that
which California voters passed by a margin of 55%; with Long Beach voters providing an even
greater margin of approval.
I personally believe that our City Attorney is a leader among those prohibitionists. I support
this statement based upon my past experience listening to his tortured legal opinions and
exaggerated rhetoric, especially his outlandish threat that council members are in jeopardy
of being jailed by the federal government if they do anything other than ban medical
marijuana in the City of Long Beach. I also find it repugnant that any city council would even
undertake to ban state law or that any city attorney, elected or not, would recommend such
a tyrannical action to the governing body he represents.
The Council should ask why our City Attorney has not yet taken this matter up with the State
Attorney General. His position in local government dictates that her counsel should guide
him. His oath of office obligates him to support the sovereign powers of the state, by which
the City is chartered, rather than collaborate with and support the conflicts of interest and
prohibitionist goals of the DOJ, DEA, and the California Narcotic Officer and Police Chief’s
It is counterintuitive to me that a legally controlled and regulated business can be singled out
as the cause of crime in a community to the extent that a governing body would consider
banning its continued existence; especially when State law specifically provides for this kind
of medical support within our communities. Persons who seek medicine from a medical
marijuana dispensary are no different from those who seek medicine from a pharmacy –and
I see no attempt by our City Attorney to ban pharmacies in the City of Long Beach.
With that said, I believe the referenced crime statistics can provide the foundation for an
independent study to scientifically determine the true cause, and dispositions, related to
those crime reports.
As one example the study could expose or refute the following: It has been said that the
referenced murder victim was in fact a member of a legal dispensary operation targeted by
the robbery suspects because it became known that he was forced to carry large amounts of
legal cash during collections; a condition created by the Department of Justice and DEA when
they informed banks that they would be held criminally liable for processing “drug money” if
legal medical marijuana dispensaries were allowed to open business bank accounts.
I have no facts at my disposal to say that this is in fact the case, but if it were, would we hold
the dispensary responsible for the cause of the robbery/murder or would we put it at the
doorstep of a tyrannical federal government? An independent study that examines this kind
of variable would go far in assisting the Council in evaluating the causative factors behind the
81 reported crimes as opposed to having to depend upon the biased prohibitionist myth
making to which the Council has been exposed to date.
Therefore, I recommend that the City engage the Rand Corporation to study the referenced
crime reports to determine if legal medical marijuana dispensaries are in fact the cause of
those 81 crimes any more than other legally established businesses in Long Beach would be.
Deputy Chief, LAPD (ret.)
Executive Board Member: LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition)
Resident: City of Long Beach
cc: Long Beach City Councilmembers