Can I Call the Police If My Neighbors Smoking Weed?

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Woman's hand holding a cigarette
Woman's hand holding a cigarette

“So, your neighbours are smoking weed. And it’s starting to get on your nerves. You can smell it all the time, and it’s making it hard to enjoy your own home. You’re wondering if you should call the police, but you’re not sure if they’ll do anything.

Well, the answer is: it depends.

If your neighbours are smoking weed in their own homes, and it’s not causing any problems for anyone else, the police probably won’t do anything. However, if the smoke is drifting onto your property or if it’s causing a nuisance to other neighbours, then the police may be able to help.

The best way to find out what the police will do is to talk to them. Explain the situation to them and see what they say. They may be able to give you some advice on how to deal with the problem.

If you’ve tried all these things and the problem is still unresolved, you may need to call the police. But before you do, make sure that you have proof of the problem. This could include photos or videos of the smoke or statements from other neighbors who are also affected.

Here in this article, we will discuss more if the police do anything about your neighbours smoking weed. In short, we will discuss:

Is the smell of weed probable cause

House Bill 1071 clarifies that the smell of weed by itself is not enough for the police to have a valid reason to suspect someone of criminal activity.

However, when it comes to a traffic stop, the odour of weed could still be a factor that contributes to an officer’s reasonable suspicion that the person might be driving while under the influence of weed.

Need to know how to get rid of weed smell? Read this.

What happens if weed is found in your house

If cops get weed in your house, then there are some penalties that you may get charged. Here are the details:

Federal Marijuana Penalties for Simple Possession

a female detective investigating crime scene holding a gun

Federal law makes it a crime for someone to have or control any amount of marijuana. To be charged with simple possession, you must have less than 50 kilograms of weed under your control. Just being near it is not enough for a charge; the prosecution has to prove that you had full control over the marijuana.

Actual possession means you physically had the weed on or close to your body, like in your hand, pocket, or purse. Constructive possession means you knew about the weed and had control over it, even if it wasn’t right on your body.

The penalties for simple possession depend on how many times you’ve been convicted:

  • First-time possession of any amount of marijuana can lead to up to 12 months in jail and a minimum fine of $1,000.
  • If you’re convicted a second time for possessing any amount of marijuana, you could face up to two years in prison and a minimum fine of $2,500.
  • A third conviction for possessing any amount of marijuana may result in up to three years in prison and a minimum fine of $5,000.

My neighbours smoke weed, and I have a baby

a guy holding cigarette and smoking in front of a baby girl

You can have a conversation with them regarding this matter. Explain that you have a baby and you’re worried that the smell might not be good for the baby. Create a basic schedule and let them know when you’ll be taking the baby outside so they can plan when to do it.

You should know the health effects of smoking weed in front of the infants or children:

When you smoke weed, it contains something called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the stuff that makes you feel high when you use marijuana. This THC can get passed on to babies and kids if they breathe in the smoke from someone else’s weed. So, even if you’re not smoking directly around them, they can still feel the effects, like getting high.

Recent studies have discovered a strong connection between having someone in the house who uses marijuana, like a parent or caregiver, and kids having THC in their bodies. When kids are exposed to THC, it could be harmful to their health.

We still need to do more research to understand how being around marijuana smoke might affect kids fully. Other studies have shown that using marijuana during the teenage years can mess with a teenager’s brain as it’s still developing. This can lead to issues with paying attention, staying motivated, and remembering things.

Need to know more about it?

Read: Health effect sections

What if police say they smell marijuana

A pair of handcuffed hands is holding a plastic bag of marijuana/weed.

If the police tell you they detect the smell of marijuana in your vehicle, it can put you in a tricky spot. Courts have established that the scent of illegal substances gives officers a valid reason to conduct a search. That’s why cops often claim they detect an odour, and sometimes they may even fib about it.

In such a situation, your best course of action is to politely tell the officer, “I have nothing to hide, but I do not consent to any searches.” If they proceed with the search and find something, you’ll need a lawyer to help you contest the charges.

Unfortunately, law enforcement sometimes employs tactics like this to get around your constitutional rights, and there’s no foolproof way to handle it. Remember, they’re more likely to do this if they’re suspicious of you for some reason, so try your best to stay composed.

Sometimes, officers might mention marijuana to gauge your reaction. If you seem nervous, it can raise their suspicions. Police often believe they can make snap judgments about whether you’re a “pothead” based on your appearance. So, if there’s anything about your style or the type of vehicle you drive that might attract their attention, it’s wise to be cautious.

Your attire and choice of vehicle are personal preferences, but it’s worth considering whether they align with certain “stoner” stereotypes. If your appearance makes you stand out, carefully think about what you keep in your car.

Lastly, it’s crucial to never smoke marijuana in or near your vehicle. At Flex Your Rights, we’ve heard numerous stories of people getting arrested, and smoking marijuana in public places like cars is the primary reason for avoidable arrests.

If the police smell weed coming from your house, can they enter without any search warrant

In Alabama, if the police smell marijuana from your home, it gives them a reason to believe something illegal might be happening inside. However, they can’t just enter your home without permission or a search warrant.

This “probable cause” means that, based on what the officer knows at that time, there’s enough information to make a reasonable person think a crime involving marijuana might have occurred or is happening in your house.

But just the smell of marijuana isn’t sufficient for the police to enter your home. They need something called “exigent circumstances.” This means there must be an urgent situation where the police need to act quickly to prevent harm to people or property, stop a suspect from escaping, or prevent evidence from being destroyed.

So, if the police knock on your door and say they smell weed, they can’t automatically enter your home without a valid reason. They might say they want to come in, but unless they can show there’s an urgent situation, they can’t legally enter without your consent or a warrant.

If you choose to let them in and they find evidence to arrest you, that’s your decision. The police might also mention they’re planning to get a search warrant. If they succeed, they can return with a warrant to search your home. However, there’s no guarantee they’ll be able to obtain one.

People May Ask

Is smell a probable cause in Minnesota?

In Minnesota, it’s acknowledged by the law that if the smell of marijuana is detected coming from a vehicle, it can provide sufficient grounds for probable cause to search that vehicle.

Is smell probable cause in Florida?

Prior to the introduction of medical marijuana in Florida, law enforcement could use the “smell” of marijuana as a valid reason to investigate and apprehend an individual. Any evidence discovered on that person as a result of the investigation triggered by the odour could

What is the Fourth Amendment in law enforcement?

The Fourth Amendment in the Constitution safeguards individuals from government actions that involve unjustified searches and seizures. It’s important to note that the Fourth Amendment doesn’t provide an absolute shield against all searches and seizures, but rather, it applies only to those actions that are considered unreasonable according to the law.

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