State aids local law enforcement with marijuana testing

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's attorney general says a new program will help local law enforcement differentiate between legal hemp and illegal marijuana.

Khan says he's hoping to cultivate hemp in Florida for its fiber, which he plans to use as a greener alternative to other clothing materials. (Adrian Cable / CC BY-SA 2.0)

The state's recent hemp legalization means law enforcement must quantify the amount of THC in suspected marijuana in order to prosecute offenders. State law defines hemp as including any cannabis products made up of 0.3% THC or less. THC is the substance in marijuana that makes people high.

Republican Attorney General Dave Yost said at a news conference Tuesday that the new program provides funding to help local agencies pay private laboratories to test THC levels in large amounts of confiscated marijuana until the state can offer that testing.

The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation's lab should have three machines by year's end that local agencies can use for free to test THC levels.

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