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Willie Nelson’s Pot Bust Prosecutor Wants Marijuana Decriminalized

Last week we reported that music legend Willie Nelson, busted with six ounces of marijuana while traveling through western Texas last November, was getting off for a song— literally. Hudspeth County Attorney C.R. “Kit” Bramblett, quite possibly the coolest prosecutor in America right now, let the “Red-Headed Stranger” plea his marijuana charge down to a fee and a courtroom performance of “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.”

Raw Story talked by phone with Bramblett, who at age 78 says he’s been a Willie Nelson fan for more than half a century. The veteran prosecutor said that if he had his way, getting busted for pot would be about as serious an offense as getting a parking ticket. Bramblett supports a bill currently working its way through the Texas state legislature that would do away with jail time for any marijuana possession less than four ounces (113 grams). “That makes sense to me,” Bramblett, who counts “I’ll Never Smoke Weed With Willie Again” as among his favorite songs. The elderly prosecutor says he’s never smoked weed in his life, but that “no one can stop people from smoking it no matter how hard you try.” “Besides,” he said, “people on that dang weed aren’t as senseless as on whiskey, I can tell you that much.”

Bramblett doesn’t want all drugs decriminalized. “Especially like, heroin, cocaine, things like that I don’t think we should let out there,” he told Raw Story. But with 70,000 people caught with under four ounces of pot in Texas in 2009, Bramblett believes it’s time to re-evaluate current laws.

As for Nelson’s unusual plea deal, Bramblett insists the country music superstar isn’t getting special treatment. “I usually recommend a fee, if they plead guilty,” he said. “A fee and court costs, which they can just mail in.”

According to Raw Story, the Republican-controlled Texas legislature is considering a bill that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. Doing so, say cannabis advocates, could save as much as $400 million each year. Another bill would legalize the marijuana for medical use. Such proposals are traditionally rejected out-of-hand by tough-on-drugs Republicans, but Texas has a libertarian streak as wide as the Panhandle plains, and with financial difficulties plaguing states big and small, the $400 million in potential savings could win over some conservatives, who hate fiscal irresponsibility as much as they do drugs.

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One Comment

  1. SteveMarch 31, 2011 at 6:57 amReply

    In the United States alone, an approximated 79,000 people die from excessive alcohol use each year (not counting an additional 16-17,000 deaths from alcohol-related car “accidents”); — as opposed to ZERO deaths worldwide connected with marijuana. Any questions?

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