WATCH: Texas attorneys' songful strategy on how to avoid pot convictions
A pair of Texas attorneys on Monday dropped a new single that probably won't make the Billboard's Hot 100 but could keep Texans' records spotless.
The song by attorneys Will Hutson and Chris Harris explains the implications of House Bill 1325, which took effect in June. The bill legalized hemp -- a product that looks and smells like marijuana, but has less than .3% tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.
With distinct similarities in the two substances, "some people are saying that Texas sort of accidentally decriminalized possession of small amounts of pot," the attorneys said on their YouTube channel. But they stopped short of agreeing with that sentiment, writing that marijuana is still illegal.
"As lawyers, we will never advise anybody to break the law," the attorneys wrote. "But we will gladly pass on some free legal advice. If you are in possession of cannabis in Texas, don't volunteer your opinion as to what it is. It might be hemp. You don't know!!!!"
The bill has created issues among district attorney offices and law enforcement agencies statewide who have no way to test marijuana's THC content.
"We think that's going to be tough to do in misdemeanor cases," Harris said.
"Unless, when the officer asks you, 'What's in this baggie?' you say, 'Aw, shucks, that's my weed!'" Huston said. "Well now you just made a judicial confession and that still could be used against you to convict you and not require the state to have to test it at all."
"We wrote a song to help you remember, don't say that it's weed," Harris said, before he and his partner begin singing.
In the video, the pair croon, "Is it hemp? Or is it weed? Is the THC over .3%? You don't know, you're not a testing facility. It could be hemp, unless you call it weed. Nobody knows if it's pot or if it's hemp, they've got to show the THC content."
The video has been watched more than 8,000 times since it was uploaded.
Another attorney who is part of the pair's law firm wrote in the comments section of the video, "if you have cannabis that has THC - that is certainly enough probable cause for an arrest. We just do not think it's enough for a conviction anymore."
Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales said last month that his office will no longer accept marijuana possession cases of 4 ounces or less from local law enforcement agencies without a lab test showing it exceeds the .3% concentration outlined by the law. So far, the county has been unable to meet the testing requirement.
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