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Matt Ferner
Matt Ferner is a national reporter for the Huffington Post. He was previously the editor of HuffPost Denver. Matt is a graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder and the University of California, Los Angeles. For tips or comments email

Entries by Matt Ferner

Man Beaten By Police Accuses Immigration Agents Of Trying To Silence His Testimony

(0) Comments | Posted September 2, 2014 | 6:54 PM

When immigration agents arrested Edgar Vargas Arzate on Aug. 18, he was driving to a court hearing in which the facts of a savage beating by Santa Ana, California, police would begin to unfold. A formal complaint filed last week by the Orange County Public Defender's office alleges that the...

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Feds Are Increasing Their Marijuana Growth Because Of Cannabinoid Research

(16) Comments | Posted August 29, 2014 | 2:33 PM

The federal government is currently growing a lot more marijuana than it has in the past because it expects higher demand from researchers for cannabidiol, or CBD, a non-psychoactive compound in marijuana that has shown tremendous promise for medical use.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse, which "oversees...

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LAPD Names Officers Sharlton Wampler, Antonio Villegas In Ezell Ford Shooting

(48) Comments | Posted August 29, 2014 | 12:30 AM

LOS ANGELES -- More than two weeks after police in a South Los Angeles neighborhood fatally shot Ezell Ford, a black man who was unarmed and mentally ill, the Los Angeles Police Department has identified the two officers involved in the shooting.

"The Los Angeles Police officers involved in the...

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This Rapper Just Won The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge With Marijuana

(99) Comments | Posted August 26, 2014 | 7:15 PM

Just when you thought all variations on the Ice Bucket Challenge had been exhausted, rapper B-Real from Cypress Hill shows up with a bucket of marijuana.

"I know we're going through a drought with water and all that stuff, so we're going to do it a little different, but I...

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Fewer Pain Pill Overdoses In States With Legal Medical Marijuana

(79) Comments | Posted August 26, 2014 | 12:40 PM

States that have legalized marijuana for medical use have lower rates of prescription painkiller overdose deaths than states that have not, new research suggests.

In a study published Monday in the latest issue of JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers found that although overdose deaths from opioid painkillers -- like...

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Police Still Won't Name Officers In Ezell Ford Shooting. Now Their Union Points To A Rap Video.

(44) Comments | Posted August 22, 2014 | 6:33 PM

LOS ANGELES -- It has been nearly two weeks since police in a South Los Angeles neighborhood fatally shot Ezell Ford, a black man who was unarmed and mentally ill. Despite pressure from the community, the Los Angeles Police Department still refuses to name the officers involved.

Earlier this...

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Ezell Ford Family Attorney Calls LAPD Shooting 'An Execution'

(18) Comments | Posted August 20, 2014 | 5:50 PM

LOS ANGELES -- The lawyer for the family of Ezell Ford, the 25-year-old unarmed black man with mental illness who was fatally shot by a police officer last week, told The Huffington Post on Wednesday that the fatal shooting by the LAPD was "an execution."

"I'm convinced due to the...

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LAPD Puts 'Investigative Hold' On Release Of Ezell Ford Autopsy

(62) Comments | Posted August 19, 2014 | 10:50 AM

LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Police Department has delayed the release of a pending autopsy report for Ezell Ford, the 25-year-old unarmed black man with mental illness who an officer fatally shot last week in a South L.A. neighborhood.

"Pending further investigative and forensic analysis, the LAPD Force Investigation...

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Al Olson Leaves NBC News To Head Marijuana News Site

(17) Comments | Posted August 18, 2014 | 6:10 PM

Veteran journalist Al Olson has left his senior editor position at NBC News to head, a cannabis news site.

“I’ve been a journalist for as long as I’ve been a marijuana advocate –- my first byline was at the age of 14, the same age I smoked my first...

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So What If Michael Brown Had Marijuana In His System When He Was Killed?

(458) Comments | Posted August 18, 2014 | 4:06 PM

The St. Louis County medical examiner's report on the body of Michael Brown, the unarmed 18-year-old killed by police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, on Aug. 9, found that Brown had "marijuana in his system" when he died, according to a Washington Post article Monday.

This development...

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LAPD Shouted 'Shoot Him' Before Killing Unarmed, Mentally Ill Black Man: Witness

(507) Comments | Posted August 13, 2014 | 4:42 PM

LOS ANGELES -- An eyewitness to the killing of Ezell Ford told The Huffington Post on Wednesday that he heard an officer with the Los Angeles Police Department shout "shoot him" before three bullets were unloaded into the unarmed, 25-year-old black man, who was on the ground.

"It is unknown...

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Colorado's Marijuana Black Market Is More Complicated Than It Looks

(55) Comments | Posted August 13, 2014 | 7:35 AM

Depending on whom you ask, Colorado's marijuana black market has either vanished or expanded since weed was legalized in the state. Mexican pot farmers have anecdotally said they're taking a beating, but one illegal Colorado drug dealer told The Washington Post that his business was growing....

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Oregon Could Generate Up To $40 Million In Tax Revenue From Legal Weed

(5) Comments | Posted August 12, 2014 | 6:43 PM

If voters in Oregon decide to legalize recreational marijuana this November, the state expects it could generate up to $40 million per year in tax revenue.

"The revenue estimate from taxes when fully implemented may range from $17 million to $40 million annually," the Oregon state financial estimate committee...

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Gavin Newsom Will Back 'The Right Initiative' To Legalize Marijuana In California

(7) Comments | Posted August 11, 2014 | 4:29 PM

California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who has made no secret of his overall support for marijuana legalization, has now said he's prepared to campaign for a ballot measure in 2016 to permit recreational pot use in the state.

During a luncheon meeting for the Marin County Bar Association last...

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Daylin Leach: 'I Took A Couple Of Hits' Of Marijuana On Colorado Trip

(15) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 7:36 PM

Pennsylvania state Sen. Daylin Leach (D), a longtime champion of marijuana legalization, went on a fact-finding trip to Colorado last month to see the state's marijuana regulatory framework firsthand. While he took in the details of Colorado's marijuana laws, he also took in some marijuana.

"I took a couple...

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Former Top NYT Editor Calls Paper's Drug Testing Policy 'Increasingly Difficult To Defend'

(11) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 3:55 PM

The day after the New York Times editorial board finished rolling out their editorial series calling for the legalization of marijuana, the board fielded questions about the paper's drug testing policy during a Reddit AMA discussion on Tuesday. Current and former editors for "the paper of...

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Washington, D.C., Will Vote On Marijuana Legalization This November

(68) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 12:52 PM

Voters in our nation's capital will be the next to decide on marijuana legalization.

Wednesday morning, the District of Columbia Board of Elections unanimously voted to put Initiative 71, a measure that would legalize adult possession and use of up to 2 ounces of cannabis as well as home...

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Former Prison May Be Converted Into A Marijuana Shop

(15) Comments | Posted August 4, 2014 | 6:18 PM

In a fitting encapsulation of how the tables have turned on U.S. marijuana policy, a former correctional facility in rural Colorado may one day be the site of a marijuana dispensary.

Earlier this year, Nicholas Erker, an agricultural businessman from the region, purchased the High Plains Correctional Facility in Brush,...

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Petition Demanding New York Times Stop Testing For Marijuana Gets Thousands Of Signatures

(108) Comments | Posted August 4, 2014 | 3:01 PM

As The New York Times continues to roll out editorials supporting the legalization of marijuana, a petition has received thousands of signatures calling for the paper of record to bring its marijuana testing policy in closer alignment with its editorial message.

The petition, created last week by...

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Obama Won't Legalize Pot Just Because The New York Times Said He Should

(68) Comments | Posted July 29, 2014 | 8:09 PM

The White House has responded to New York Times editorials this week supporting marijuana legalization, saying ending U.S. pot prohibition isn't the "silver bullet solution."

The Office of National Drug Control Policy staff, while acknowledging the criminal justice system needs reform, argues in a blog...

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