Recreational marijuana in South Dakota might create challenges for Minnesota law enforcement

“The potential for drivers who have consumed marijuana to various impairment levels and then driving in Minnesota creates a safety risk, mainly due to the impact of marijuana on reaction time and impaired judgment on their driving,” Willmar Police Chief Jim Felt said.

South Dakota, Montana, Arizona and New Jersey also approved the sale of marijuana on Nov. 3, making recreational marijuana legal in 15 states and Washington, D.C.

South Dakota and Mississippi also approved medical marijuana measures, bringing the total nationwide to 34 states, which include Minnesota.

Felt wrote in an email that the new law could lead some people to bring back marijuana to Minnesota, where it is still illegal.

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“South Dakota law would allow recreational use in South Dakota only,” Felt wrote. “Any marijuana or marijuana products must stay in South Dakota or be subject to Minnesota penalties.”

In Minnesota, possession of marijuana in an amount less than 42.5 grams is a petty misdemeanor, which is a non-arrestable offense — except if it’s more than 1.4 grams in a vehicle, when it becomes a misdemeanor.

“Misdemeanors are…

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