Tennessee Police Officers Confuse Ohio State Buckeye Leaf for Marijuana

By Mike Atkinson
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Police officers in Tennessee made a mistake earlier this week that will get them into the news and possibly make them the laughing stock of the college football nation.

A 65 year old woman by the name of Bonnie Jonas-Boggioni was pulled over while driving through Tennessee with her husband. The cops said they had pulled her over on drug suspicion, after they saw what appeared to be a marijuana leaf on a bumper sticker attached to the back of her car.

Unfortunately for the officer, the bumper sticker was a picture of a buckeye leaf. See, Jonas-Boggioni is a die-hard Ohio State Buckeyes fan and was even wearing a 2002 National Football Champions T-shirt at the time of her “arrest”.

You know, officer, you may have heard of them. They’re this football school, “OH” “IO”, Carmen Ohio, Dotting the “I”, none of that ringing a bell?

Clearly the officer was not a football fan.

So what exactly is a buckeye? This is important. Aside from anyone related to Ohio State, I feel as though not too many people know what a Buckeye is. Heck, I didn’t even know until a few years ago.

According to the Miriam-Webster Online Dictionary, a buckeye is “any of various shrubs or trees (genus Aesculus) of the horse-chestnut family; also : the large nutlike seed of such a shrub or tree.”

So, in a nutshell (pun intended) it’s a plant, or the nut on the tree.

Now, let’s be honest, these police officers can’t be the only ones who have made this mistake. There are definitely similarities between the Buckeye plant and a marijuana plant.

This would not be that hard of a mistake to make for someone who has never seen a Marijuana plant before, but for a police officer, he should have been able to tell the difference.

What makes this a poor judgment on the police officer’s part is to assume that because a 65 year old woman had a bumper sticker of a leaf on her car, she had drugs on her. I can’t imagine the bumper sticker didn’t have an “O” on it somewhere or the OSU logo.

Needless to say, this made quite a splash in local news, as Boggioni was on the record saying “It’s just amazing they would be that dumb.”

So remember Buckeye fans, if you are driving through Tennessee in the near future, be sure to keep your buckeyes out of view.

Follow Mike on Twitter at @MikeAtkinsonRS or visit his Rant Sports Author Page.


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