Pocatello, Idaho is the first testing ground for the retail sale CBD oil since the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. Katrina Evans found herself in hot water last November when she posted a sign that CBD oil was for sale at her retail shop. Local police confiscated CBD oil from her store Katz without a search warrant and tested it in their labs. They claim the oil contained THC and is, therefore, is considered a controlled substance and illegal in Idaho. While the owner wasn't arrested, the police issued a warning to all residents of the city "anyone possessing or selling CBD oil can result in criminal charges."
According to the local news station, police said under Idaho law, the presence of THC, in any amount, is illegal to sell, possess, or consume.
They say it is the police department's policy to actively investigate reports of illegal activity and pursue criminal charges when warranted, including businesses or individuals who may have purchased illegal products.
Many stores sell hemp products that do contain trace amounts of THC, minimal as they may be. Products can be found at large box stores throughout the state. Katrina plans on challenging the discrimination of small businesses.
“We have tried numerous times to meet with the mayor and city council. Meetings have been cancelled and a request for a work session denied as it did not meet with their criteria. They have refused to inform us of the criteria we need to meet. We have been told it was on the advice of the city attorney and we would need to contact him. Multiple calls and messages have been left with his office and none have been returned. Hemp products are sold all over the state and in the city of Pocatello, yet we are still being denied the same rights as large chain stores. I will not go quietly away." - Owner Katrina Evans
In the time since Evans has stopped selling the CBD oil, she estimates that she's lost a significant amount of potential income.
"I figure that I could have probably made roughly $30,000," she said.
Today, Katrina put her sign back up at her store. She will be selling the same brand hemp oil that is carried in Walmart and WinCo. With the receipts hanging on the wall, Evans says she's just trying to open a dialogue with the city.
It's a move she anticipates will lead to her arrest.
Health Freedom Idaho supports her efforts to clarify the statute and her right to sell CBD oil in the state.
Martin Luther King, Jr.'s comment in his famous letter from Birmingham Jail: "One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws."1