Annapolis police chief relies on urban myth to argue against pot bills

WASHINGTON – Annapolis’ police chief relied on a satirical news story for the basis of his testimony against legalizing marijuana at the Maryland Capitol Tuesday.

Chief Michael Pristoop told lawmakers during a hearing that a number of people died from marijuana overdoses the first day Colorado’s pot law took effect.

Pristoop apologized for relaying the inaccurate information but said his misstep doesn’t diminish the concerns of law enforcement officials who believe pot should remain a banned substance and that measures being considered by the General Assembly would not reduce gang violence or organized crime.

“I believed the information I obtained was accurate but I now know the story is nothing more than an urban legend,” Pristoop said in a statement released Tuesday evening.

Sen. Jamie Raskin, D-Montgomery and a sponsor of one legalization bill, told the Washington Post that he informed Pristoop of the mistake after a Google search found the source of the information was a parody published by The Daily Currant.

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