Federal law: Medical marijuana users cannot own, buy firearms

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Some folks will have a decision to make - pot or guns?

While Oklahoma law will change allowing medical marijuana, federal law says it's still illegal, meaning owning a gun will, for the most part, be against the law.

“Using a controlled substance is a prohibitor, similar to being convicted of a felony offense,” said Meredith Davis, a special agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

That’s why Davis says it's not considered a violation of the 2nd amendment.

Tyler Miller, the general manager at Wilshire Gun Range says they will now have to make sure any purchases made at their store are legal. And, that means those with a medical marijuana license are required to answer "yes" on the federal background checks.

“That's the reality to it,” said Miller. “It's in many ways an honors system, but just know if you go and answer in there the negative and it`s actually the affirmative, you've committed a felony.”

However, Davis says there is an exception. For example, if a spouse needs medical marijuana for an illness and the other spouse is a gun owner, the ATF may grant permission as long as the ill spouse has no access to the gun.

“The husband wouldn't be prohibited and as long as he has a manner to maintain the safety and security of those firearms in a way that the wife would not have access to them, so a gun safe that is separate and secure," said Davis.

Davis says right now, the feds don't have any plans to change the law, but there is talk Congress is working with states to help legislate their marijuana laws.

“There is no way to compensate for each state's law, manner implementation of the product itself,” said Davis. “Who's able to use it, who's able to prescribe it. The most important thing is to be able to seek proper medical treatment but also remain lawful and we`re here to assist the citizens of Oklahoma with that.”

Davis says if you own a firearm or have any questions about this federal law, you can contact the Oklahoma City ATF office at (469) 227-5660.

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