GeoHot Gets Busted for Weed Possession on His Way to Speak at SXSW
March 15, 2012 10:37 AM
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Police charged GeoHot as if his THC chocolates were solid marijuana
Renowned hardware hacker and
George "GeoHot" Hotz, 22, has been
and booked for possessing marijuana.
These days GeoHot is
working at Facebook
and is an active member of Facebook-sponsored "
Chronic Dev Team
", which works to "free your iPad and iPhone". Travelling from
home in Cali
, GeoHot was cruising into Texas in the western-border town and census site of Sierra Blanca on his way to speak at the renowned entertainment and digital lifestyle festival
South by Southwest
, which is held every year in Austin, a city in central-Texas.
While the hot question on everyone's mind may be whether the famed hacker was "hot boxing", we may never know.
What is known is that the town's police, expecting the rush of festival participants driving in from California were screening all cars with drug sniffing dogs. The dogs apparently became extra excited at GeoHot's car, and sure enough he had some of "the chronic" in his car -- enough to reportedly earn him a felony possession charge.
Taken downtown, he was booked at the station (likely he did not get the opportunity to test his IRL jailbreaking skills), and then released on $1,500 USD bond.
But GeoHot might be in good shape --
apparently the officer goofed
. He had approximately 1/4 oz. of marijuana and chocolate edibles equivalent to less than 1/8 oz. However, the officers weighed the chocolate as if it was
marijuana, hence how he received the felony possession. This led the officers to then estimate the value of GeoHot's "special" chunky chocolate truffle at $800 USD, rather than the $15 USD he reportedly paid for it.
As a reader pointed out, nonsensical as it may be, this is actually how the Texas penal code works -- anything with a drug in it, is counted as a drug when waying for determination of a felony. GeoHot is only fortunate he didn't have a couple more chocolates or he might be looking at a 3rd degree felony and some serious prison time. (The threshold for a 3rd degree felony is 1 oz.)
The whole incident casts in a whole new light GeoHot's surprisingly funny and solid "rap retort" to Sony Corp.'s (
against him for
jailbreaking the PlayStation 3
America is a rather funny nation where both of its last two presidents openly admitted to smoking marijuana, yet it remains an imprisonable felony in many regions to possess the potent plant. While peer-reviewed studies published in medicine's most prestigious journals found marijuana to be
less harmful than alcohol and tobacco
, it remains illegal in America. In fact marijuana has been found to have
mild beneficial effects
Above the Law
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
3/15/2012 5:21:16 PM
I thought that the United States were about promoting tolerance and personal freedoms when they don't impact others abilities to do so. Such is the case here. Instead when it comes to drug use there’s a common notion for promoting the greater good. The innocent people here are the drug users, manufacturers etc. The criminals are the prohibition enforcers locking people up for no justifiable purpose other than some people don’t agree with their lifestyle. Personally, I think its more prudent to not ostracize our people over such a small thing. People who are charged for such crimes are forced to report said convictions on job applications for many years after. Which is likely to deter employers from hiring them. Many opportunities are taken away from these people which ultimately reduces their support for and belief in the law and justice. I don't see why drug manufacturing warrants you jail time for doing nothing more than what a tobacco farmer does. And for some crazy notion, the law calls for theft of all property bought with drug money. That seems like greater harm to me.
Any time I get into my car and drive down the road you are at risk by my choices and yet this is common place. Car manufacturers aren't hunted down to have their assets stolen by the government because someone used their car for vehicular manslaughter. Should we ban sex because it promotes the spread of AIDS and other dangerous STDs? Should we mandate the use of condoms? Should every person who buys fast food be arrested for harming themselves? Many things are dangerous to our health but are allowed, but for some reason were allowed to make our own choices in these matters. All illegal drugs can be used in an environment that doesn't bring harm to others, and yet there's still a blanket ban on many substances. With alcohol you can consume it at your own risk, except for the age limitation, only when you become dangerous to others does it become illegal to conduct such activities. This is the way all drug laws should be. Prohibition is a terrible idea.
The United States laws on drug control are ridiculous. I have diabetes. For some reason the government thinks that I shouldn't be able to buy my insulin except when the doctor authorizes it. Despite being educated on the dangers of these drugs I'm still not allowed to purchase many of my medications without a prescription. This is a gross injustice. Under certain circumstances, they deliberately prevent me from being able to control my diabetes and live healthily. Earlier this year my ID expired, the day after I was unable to purchase rolling papers at a gas station. Why? Funny that I could have purchased enough explosive fuel to burn down the store and endanger everyone there without need for a current ID. Instead the government feels I should be hassled about buying some paper. Good thing they are here to protect me from making poor choices.
"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer
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