For those of you who aren’t familiar, delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinol is very similar to its cousin, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which is more commonly known as THC. In common terms, THC is the special ingredient in marijuana that gets you high.
We’ve previously posted about the fact that delta-8 seems to exist in a legal gray area in Indiana. Since that time, the U.S. Department of Justice has issued a letter stating that delta-8 derived from hemp is not subject to the Controlled Substances Act. That’s a pretty big deal, as it seems to move delta-9 out of the gray and firmly into black and white territory.
The Indiana State Police, however, see things differently. In an emailed statement to Indiana Public Media, ISP Captain Ron Galaviz maintained that “Indiana’s controlled substances statutes define Tetrahydrocannabinols (both organic and synthetic) as controlled substances. What this means is that Delta-8 THC products are arguably covered under Title 35 as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance separate from the allowances for hemp-derived products that contain no more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC.”
The ISP are basically saying, Sure, you can read this as a black and white issue . . . but what if it’s not? Even the pushback, though, is qualified with the word arguably. This is because the ISP are savvy enough to know they’re offering an interpretation of the law—not the interpretation.
So it’s six months later, and the issue is no closer to being settled. One the one hand, we have the DOJ offering guidance, and on the other, the ISP are insisting they don’t like anything that even looks like weed. Yet as of this writing, Indiana has taken no steps to criminalize the possession of delta-8.
It’s a strange time to be alive, and everyone reading this is encouraged to proceed with caution. If you’re purchasing delta-8, maybe don’t use your credit card, and definitely don’t enroll in the frequent shopper rewards program. If the tide turns and delta-8 is made illegal, you don’t want your name appearing at the top of a list of known enthusiasts.
Right now, delta-8 is still being sold at stores across Indiana, and most lawmakers are declining to comment for fear of being seen as soft on drugs. If you have any questions about what this means or where things might be headed, give us a call at 317-632-3642 and remember—always plead the 5th!