SEATTLE — It starts with a phone call.
That sets into motion a well thought-out process, from phone call to dispatch, to the driver who delivers high-quality recreational pot to your door in 45 minutes or less.
It’s simple as that.
“When we got into it originally, we just really needed a way to feed ourselves and our families and it was really not intended to get as big as it did,” said the founder of the Winterlife Co-op, who goes by the name Otter.
Everyone in the company has a critter name.
Open since early last year,the business has grown exponentially.
“Our main goal is to provide safe, legitimate and reliable service to the smoking community of Seattle,” Otter said.
Along with pot, customers can also buy edibles and oils, even smoking paraphernalia.
While it is still a legal gray area, Otter says they welcome police oversight.
“The laws right now, as far as we can tell, we’re trying to do as much as possible to fit within those guidelines and any laws that come about in the future we’re totally willing to do those as well,” Otter said.
The fact of the matter is every time a deal is done, the law is broken.
But, it’s not that simple.
“The problem is the driver — or the deliverer who is handing you the marijuana — is actually committing a felony, technically,” said the ACLU’s Allison Holcomb. “The person who is purchasing the marijuana is completely fine. It’s never been a crime under Washington state law to buy marijuana.”
Holcomb authored Initiative 502 and she’s also the criminal justice director for the ACLU-Washington.
Holcomb says, technically, I-502 requires all sales to occur on the premises of a state licensed outlet.
Bad news for drivers? Maybe, but the chance of arrest, at least right now, is unlikely.
“If there are no complaints, and no one is being hurt, we would hate to take resources away from those investigations where people are being robbed and attacked and deploy them in another area where there basically have been no complaints,” Seattle Police Department spokesman Sean Whitcomb said Wednesday.
So for now, let the deliveries continue.
For how long, nobody knows.
When the Justice Department allowed Washington state’s legal marijuana experiment to continue, in spite of its illegality at the federal level, one requirement was that legal sales dry up the black market, which technically this business is.
So things could still change after state-licensed pot shops open later this year.