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Missouri has legal pot, but restrictions on use remain


The passing of Amendment 3 in the Show-Me State in November has prompted questions about where adults 21 or older can legally use marijuana products.

Missouri has had medical marijuana sales since 2020. Recreational sales began just last week after voters approved them in November, with most medical shops also selling recreational products.

You can now go to your local dispensary and purchase cannabis, but if you're wondering if you can use what you buy anywhere you want, the answer is no, there are restrictions.

Marijuana law and policy expert Dan Viets says smoking in public is prohibited. He says if you do smoke in a public place you get a ticket.

"It's not a crime but it is a law violation and could result in a fine and the fines get higher the more times it happens," Viets said.

Fines start off at $100.

So what does the state of Missouri consider to be a public place?

Missouri State Law states "a public place is defined as any public or private property or portion of public or private property that is open to the general public."

Those places include sidewalks, streets, bridges, parks, schools and businesses.

Rental property owners can also prohibit marijuana use.

The legalization doesn't now allow people to get high and drive a vehicle or a boat or pilot an airplane.

"It remains a crime to drive while impaired by cannabis," Viets said. "It's definitely risky to consume cannabis in a motor vehicle not only because you can be charged with driving while impaired by marijuana, but law enforcement officers are going to frown upon that."

Amendment 3 does allow you to legally use in private places.

"You can smoke anywhere in private, in one's home, someone else's home, at a special event for which there is admission, if it's a private event then people are allowed to smoke there."

A bill is pending in the Missouri General Assembly that could allow marijuana use where tobacco use is allowed.

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Erika McGuire

Erika McGuire originally comes from Detriot. She is a reporter and weekend anchor on ABC 17 News.


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