In a Press Release issued today, January 23, 2012, Quartzsite Police Chief Jeff Gilbert states,
"On January 21, the Quartzsite Police Department assisted the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) law enforcement division with the arrest and investigation of several subjects staying in the La Posa North camp grounds.
One person was arrested and booked into the La Paz County jail for possession of a large quantity of marijuana. While the person in question may have possessed a medical marijuana card, the BLM camping area is on federal land and the “legal possession” of marijuana does not apply.
In fact, the amount of marijuana seized was over the legal threshold for personal possession by Arizona’s new laws, and if not charged federally, would have been charged under state statutes.
Numerous anti-Quartzsite Facebook sites have “posted” the following information which is far from the truth.
Demand Justice in Quartzsite AZ:
Demand Justice in Quartzsite has received several reports this morning from people camped in the North La Posa LTVA that various law enforcement agencies have been doing massive sweeps arresting and citing "undesirables". We talked to Jack Silent Eagle a Navajo Silversmith last night who said he was "chased by cowboys on ATV's" and injured his arm falling in a wash. "I thought they were gonna kill me" he said. The timing seems to be an indication that the town fears "traveling vagrants" may be registering to vote in the upcoming election. Zeke (who did not give his last name), a vendor camping in the LTVA said "They came into our camp and began searching everybody's RV's without warrants or probable cause. One retired guy was arrested for Marijuana possession even though he's a medical patient in California. They gave us all tickets."
The information being published on these sites regarding this incident is obviously intended to mislead and scare the public. “Law enforcement agencies” are not conducting “massive sweeps” and arresting “undesirables”.
The Quartzsite Police Department will, and always has, support other agencies in their law enforcement efforts within the jurisdiction of Quartzsite. Being a medical marijuana patient in California does not exclude you from other state and federal laws.
Other individuals were cited and released for possession of marijuana by BLM Rangers on the scene. One individual involved is being investigated by the Quartzsite Police Department for the possession of materials that may be associated with child pornography.
These arrests have nothing to do with any “upcoming election” as their propaganda alleges."