• Illustration: VINNIE NEUBERG
The O had this intriguing story yesterday about apartment dwellers in Philomath, Oregon who contacted police about a neighbor's incessant and "offensive" pot smoke, claiming the smell would come wafting into their windows at least two or three times per week. Based on the smell, the cops paid the neighbor, Jared William Lang, a visit, searched his apartment and found graffiti spray paint and stencils, ultimately charging him with vandalism. Lang was fined and sentenced to several months in jail. Now this was back in 2012—long before Oregon's recent legislation allowing cannabis smoking in the home—nevertheless Lang appealed the decision claiming that the police were wrong to search his apartment for the sole reason of an "offensive smell."

Long story short, the Oregon Court of Appeals agreed that, even though many neighbors complained about the smell emanating from Lang's apartment, pot smoke doesn't objectively stink. From the O:

The appeals court ruled that although rotten eggs or raw sewage are "physically offensive" odors to all, marijuana smoke isn't necessarily so.

"We are not prepared to declare that the odor of marijuana smoke is equivalent to the odor of garbage. Indeed, some people undoubtedly find the scent pleasing."


"(A)n odor that is very intense and persistent could reasonably be regarded as offensive even if it ordinarily might be considered pleasant — perfume, for example, or pungent spices," the appeals court wrote.

"Who determines whether a particular odor is offensive?" the appeals court added.

You wanna know who determines that? BLOGTOWN READERS, THAT'S WHO!