Jason Cantrell, an assistant city attorney in New Orleans, has resigned after being given a summons for marijuana possession. Cantrell was in court when a joint fell out of his pocket in front of a New Orleans police officer. The incident not only cost Cantrell his job but has put his wife, New Orleans City Council candidate LaToya Cantrell in a difficult spot.
Cantrell issued a statement saying she was “angry, embarrassed, and disappointed” with her spouse but declining to withdraw from the race. It strikes me as rather bizarre that a husband found in possession of a single joint would prompt demands for a withdrawal from a campaign. Cantrell however made clear how serious this matter is, stating that she is “very concerned for his health and well-being . . . and encourage Jason to seek the professional.”
I do not wish to downplay any drug use and I do find it outrageous for lawyer to carry drugs into a court. However, this violation is rarely prosecuted in most states and most people would not see this as evidence of an addiction or serious health concern. The question is how to deal with such a matter as a professional matter. There is a trend toward decriminalization. That is not the case with New Orleans, of course, and a prosecutor is particularly held to a high standard of compliance with the laws that he must enforce. However if a prosecutor were found publicly intoxicated or even cited for DUI, should there be a resignation? In an earlier case, we debated this issue earlier with a prosecutor who was both drunk and unruly.
In the end, a prosecutor must charge people with drug violations even if one joint is unlikely to result in a charge. When you combine drug use with introduction of drugs in a courthouse, the matter would be clear for many supervisory officials.
33 thoughts on “New Orleans Prosecutor Resigns After Joint Drops Out of Pocket In the Middle of Court In Front of Cop”
It is a matter of ethics. It is not ethical for this guy to hold that position he should by law be prosecuted the same way he has prosecuted others.
What a waste of time and effort by our society. THis guy might have become a prosecutor to go after real criminals, those who commit thefts, rape or steal. You know, where there is an actual victim. There is no victim in smoking marijuana. It’s a drug much less harmful (not even close) than alcohol. He should have been smarter than to bring a joint with him to the courthouse but calls for her to resign show how aburd our war on drugs and marijuana is getting.
Oops, forgot the link, and should say that it is a northern cardinal with a perky appearance.
Here’s an avatar choice. Going over the line again, I think you deserve a better avatar. Here is one you might consider. I felt that it matched you better some personality-wise. But there are many more to choose from.
To me, the only reason he should lose his job would be if he has sent people to prison for MJ related ‘offenses’. This stupid war on drugs should end. Now. But if you are going to prosecute people for doing that which you yourself are ‘guilty’ of doing, then, by all means, you should be fired.
Great news OS!
Mike S, yeah, what you said. And I don’t know why we have remnants to deal with while we still have the whole cloth to deal with too!
raff, the officer who sucker punched the lady is being fired. And the mayor has offered her his personal apology.
Better yet, cigarettes, tobacco only, that smell like MJ. Drives the cops wild. I might even think of lighting up.
“However if a prosecutor were found publicly intoxicated or even cited for DUI, should there be a resignation?”
If “publicly” means “in court” as here, I think the answer is pretty clear. If anyone has any problem with that conclusion substitute “airline pilot” or “surgeon” and add the appropriate work setting to test your compassion.
Next big trend: Chewing tobacco which smells like MJ.
Next billionaire: The one who develops MJ that does not smell like MJ.
And encapsulated like wet snuff is in Sweden in thin paper. Of course using it bare, under your upper lip, is very macho—-at least some guys believe that.
He should resign for stupidity on the job. I don’t care what he smokes or ingests on his own time but bringing a joint to court was stupid.
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