Cannabis Does Not Kill. Unfortunately, Cannabis Prohibition Enforcement Can!

The Tallahassee Police Have Much To Answer For Regarding The Murder Of Rachael Hoffman
For the last few days I’ve receive email from the Tallahassee area from NORML supporters claiming to either know or be friends with Rachael Hoffman, that she was busted a few weeks ago and accused by police for selling a small amount of cannabis and possessing MDMA was squeezed by local police to become a snitch, and that, disturbingly to them all, she had been missing for a few days. They were genuinely in fear of her life.
In the last 48 hours, police arrested two suspects in Rachael’s disappearance, and early yesterday she was confirmed murdered.
Today, as the general public around Tallahassee and Florida learn more about how the police used this young woman for controlled drug buys, the public comments found online and on local radio talk shows demonstrate terrific outrage directed towards the police.
Thankfully.
I spoke with Rachael’s mother Margie Weifs late yesterday afternoon. Talk about a difficult conversation. What do you say to a mother who has just found out that her only daughter is dead? A beautiful daughter dead not at the hands of cannabis, but the police agency that chose to bust her for pot (or, as Tallahassee law enforcement are calling pot in this case, narcotics), wire her and send her towards men who were reportedly buying and selling hard drugs, actual narcotics, to ensnare them for future arrest and prosecution?
To say that Rachael’s mom is not confused, angry and wanting answers to this terrible tragedy in Tallahassee would be a woeful understatement. After the answers, she tells me she wants justice in this case.

Watch the video of Tallahassee’s Chief of Police here trying to explain why getting murdered was Rachael’s fault, not the police’s. Further, watch here the Police Department’s Public Information Officer get grilled by Florida media about police procedures.
Did the police follow proper procedure in using Rachael for controlled buys? See the Tallahassee Police’s ‘rules and procedures’ for using snitches here and here.

There is an outpouring in Tallahassee from Rachael’s friends and family to try to heal, and then to organize against both the recruitment of young girls by police to be wired confidential informants and the general prohibition of cannabis.
In Margie’s view, her daughter would be alive today, going into a Mother’s Day weekend, but for a country that does not tax and control cannabis.
Ms. Hoffman is hardly the first young person induced by police to set up other possible illicit drug users who has been killed because they’d hoped their cooperation with police was going to lead to some modicum of deferential treatment from the prosecutor’s office.
PBS’ Frontline examined the disturbing and increased use of confidential informants by federal and local law enforcement in the award-winning SNITCH. But, unfortunately from my biased viewpoint, few in the mainstream media have cast light on police tactics in their daily and futile efforts to enforce prohibition laws (an exception here is the reporting of Reason Foundation fellow and Cato Institute researcher Radley Balko).

Health and Self-Preservation Tip: If law enforcement ever approach you (or a loved one) regarding a cannabis-related offense, and then seek to recruit you to became a confidential informant or a snitch, ‘just say no’ as your life (or that of a loved one) may be in danger.

0 thoughts

  1. As a native Floridian who has witnessed innumerable instances of local police misconduct and abuse of authoritative power, I extend my full and sincere sympathy to Rachael’s family and friends from a perspective approaching empathetic. The authorities in this case should be ashamed of their role in this young woman’s death; though ashamed not, they will certainly face scrutiny from the public regarding the prominence of marijuana search, seizure, persecution, and redemption policies within our democratic state–a state plagued by more prominent conspirators than drug-users–a state distracted by predators like hurricanes, electoral fraud, immigration ethics, and now…a state shirking from its responsibility in Rachael’s murder. I’m ashamed to be a Floridian.

  2. This is terrible. Police who recruit informants are bribing these “criminals” to go do the dirty work, the stuff that the ARMED police officers are too scared to do. And it breeds hate and mistrust in what would otherwise be a peaceful, unified culture. This saddens me greatly.

  3. If you live near Tallahassee and would like to show your support for Rachel and her friends and family, and for an end to tragic policies like the ones used in this case, here are two websites to visit (on facebook):
    http://fsu.facebook.com/group.php?gid=42256525219&ref=nf
    this one includes a beautiful video tribute that made me so sad that i never got to meet her.
    and here’s a link to the protest site:
    http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=13287531543&ref=mf

  4. Law enforcements use of informants in the drug war is a tragedy that can only get worse. In Oregon law enforcement used an informant who was mentally ill and had a history of drug and alcohol abuse. Soon after becoming an agent for the South Coast Interagency Narcotics Team she became a school bus driver. For more information on this sting operation go to http://scint-stinks.com

  5. This is truly tragic. When will the govt ever stop hunting down citizens in a war on drugs that has already been lost. How long have they had to clean up drugs? since Regan. Guess what, Drugs are still everywhere. Harsh sentences only increase profits, attract more dealers and allows dealers to afford weapons similar to the one that killed Rachel. These cops should get criminal negligence charges. If I, intentionally or not, kill somebody, I get locked up. I guarantee these police were real cocky with her threatening her with jail time……I hope they rot in a jail cell.
    Govt: Stop hunting your citizens. That’s what the terrorists are for.

  6. I too, live in FL. Sadly, especially in the small counties down here, the police/sheriffs run things as they see fit. The law does not apply to them. I am a member of NORML and I hope that, during my lifetime, I will see a change in the legal status of marijuana. I know lots of people, including my own family members, that have died from alcohol. That drug is hundreds of times more dangerous than cannabis and I wonder how long it will take these idiots in FL and other places to realize this?? Go after the crack and meth heads. Leave pot smokers alone!!

  7. The only thing surprising in this case is we ever herd anything about her being an informant! If the fascist had just kept quiet about her working for them we would never have known. On the other hand I live in central Florida and this is the first I’ve herd of this case despite have a 24 hour news station just for local news.

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  9. My sincere sympathy to Rachel’s family. My boyfriend was arestd for cultivating marijuana last summer. He was recently sent to Federal Prison for 10 years. why? Because he wouldn’t snitch. He tried to report in formation about an underage drinking party, but that was not important enough. Theywere not even interested in that information.
    We sat in court awaiting his sentencing and watched a Crack dealer, who was in custody, given a sentence of only 3 years, because of snitching. He was a repeat offender.
    This is not justice!
    By the way my daughter died in an alcohol related accident. I wish someone had snitched out that underage drinking party!
    R.I.P Rebecca
    R.I.P Rachel

  10. IT IS A SHAME THAT THIS COUNTRY IS IN THE STATE IT’S IN! GOD, PLEASE HELP US! PROHIBITION HAS TO END, FOR OUR FUTURE.

  11. will clark Says:
    the video’s dont’ work i would really like to see them.
    Try updating to the latest version of Flash player.
    Laura @ norml

  12. sry i just know how to write my name in arabic :)) anyway however in arabic when i read some thing like that i just say “raee” i donot know how to say it in english . thanks

  13. why hasent the father of this little girl shot those cops who used his daughter in this way .things have sure changed .when i was growing up my dad and his friends would have butchered those assholes for killing one of thire children i know i would have also those crimnals need killin .he would have said.untill these animals are made to pay for thier sins the murders of our children and eldery will continue

  14. Yeah, if that was my daughter I’d definatly want to kill those cops. Make them feel the same pain she did right b4 she died. This is why educated people have a distain for law enforcement. Just because its the law, doesn’t make it right.

  15. Horrible horrible tragedy and the justice system is at fault! My daughter is involved with someone that I know is an informant and has gotten away with domestic abuse for over a year. 22 police reports and he never was arrested for any of it. It is a sad sad world to see things like this happen and to believe changes will be made and followed when all CI information is so hush hush and can be swept under the carpet.

  16. I just seen this story on dateline. It’s sad how such a young pretty girl had to loose her life due to cops not having there sh*t straight. They didn’t protect her like they should havs. As for the cops trying to make her look bad for smoking Marijuana. Thats a bunch of B.S if Marijuana was sooooo BAD it wouldn’t be legal here in CALI… Yes LEAGAL. RIP Rachael

  17. Just saw special, sounds like ONE LESS drug dealer polluting our kids. Did you miss the part about the ecstasy!
    Oh, post 24…I saw the special too “pretty” girl? Are you serious? She looked like a character from a Dr. Suess book.

  18. I’ve about had enough of the local law using informants! THEY are the ones who take the oath to put their lives on the line. For them to use citizens the way they do, rather than the old work their way in undercover, is deplorable. Why does society think these people deserve is if they’re killed? Because law makes them all out to be the wretches who beat up some little old lady down the street. Heaven forbid the truth come out that they use scared kids most of the time. Kids who are only seeking to get out from under jail time for things there shouldn’t be time for to begin with.

  19. I think alcohol is more dangerus than cannabis. You can buy it with 16!
    No one said somethink if kids are drinking alcohol in public. This are our real problems… not cannabis.

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