Pot, Parents and Kids. - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Pot, Parents and Kids.

Nationwide more teenagers are illegally lighting up.  According to a new study by The  Partnership At Drug Free.org, nearly 10% of teens smoked marijuana at least 20 times in the last month.

Wichita County Chief Juvenile Probation Officer Kirk Wolfe said when it comes to the kids he works with, marijuana is the most popular drug.  But, he also said the amount of teens using has remained relatively steady.

Wolfe said, "I've not seen what I would call an increase in marijuana use its been pretty stable over the years that I've been here."

Another issue is parents allowing their kids to experiment with illegal substances.  President of Partnership Steve Pasierb said many parents think one hit or a few prescription pills wont hurt.

Wichita falls residents we spoke with disagree with that thinking.

One resident said, "I think it is a big deal because that is the exact thing that leads to using stronger drugs like cocaine.  If they start experimenting with the marijuana and the prescription pills it could lead up to a stronger type of drug."

A new mother we spoke with said, "I don't think its quite right because the parents are the first role models for kids.  If the parent is going to be an enabler to them then there's nothing telling the kid its wrong."

A new ad campaign from Partnership is raising awareness about parents as enablers.  The adds portray parents allowing kids to drink, smoke and do drugs under their supervision. 

Officer Wolfe made a clear distinction between underage drinking and smoking marijuana. "When you're 21 alcohol is legal.  When you're 21, when you're 18, when you're 16, when you're 15... Marijuana is not legal.

Wolfe also said among teens on probation in Wichita County there has been an increase in the use of Synthetic Marijuana.  This controversial substance is often sold as incense or spice and is sprayed with a chemical that, when smoked, mimics the feeling of marijuana.

Jack Lamson, Newschannel 6

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