'60 Minutes' Interviews Boulder DA Stan Garnett About Medical Marijuana
Boulder County District Attorney Stan Garnett dished his views on Colorado's medical marijuana laws to CBS's "60 Minutes" on Monday after the television newsmagazine sent a crew to town to interview the prosecutor for an upcoming segment.
"My emphasis is always public safety," Garnett said in an interview prior to Monday's taping. "I don't see the public safety benefit in prosecuting law-abiding dispensaries or making low-level marijuana cases much of a priority."
Garnett -- who was interviewed by "60 Minutes" correspondent Steve Kroft in a Boulder courtroom -- said he is under the impression the segment will be about the business of medical marijuana in Colorado, and that it also will include interviews with dispensary owners. He said he expects the segment to air in the fall.
Kevin Tedesco, a publicist for "60 Minutes," declined to comment on the piece.
"We don't discuss stories we're working on," he said.
Garnett said Monday that he believes Colorado's current medical marijuana regulatory system is working well, an opinion he has been vocal about over the past few months.
In March, Garnett sent a letter to U.S. Attorney John Walsh, saying that local regulation of the medical marijuana industry is working and medical marijuana enforcement should not be a law enforcement priority for the federal government.
More than 96,000 patients currently possess valid medical marijuana cards in Colorado, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
Colorado's medical marijuana industry also was the focal point of a National Geographic series this spring called "American Weed," which spotlighted the North Boulder Wellness Center.
Garnett's appearance on "60 Minutes" won't be a first for Boulder County law enforcement.
In 2008, Boulder police Chief Mark Beckner made headlines when he appeared on "60 Minutes" advocating that the drinking age be lowered from 21 to 18.
Beckner alerted the City Council about his comments before the segment aired. At the time, leaders from the University of Colorado and the city were meeting to brainstorm ways to address alcohol abuse -- an issue that had gained extra attention following the 2004 alcohol poisoning death of fraternity pledge Lynn Gordon "Gordie" Bailey.
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Author: Brittany Anas
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