Private playground open to public not “school or park” for purposes of G. L. c. 94C, sec. 32J

In a case charging the defendant with the sale of marijuana within 100 feet of a school or park, the Appeals Court ruled that a private playground open to the public does not fit the definition of a “school or park” under G. L. c. 94C, § 32J. 

In Commonwealth v. Gopaul, the Court answered the following reported questions:

1)  With reference to the phrase ‘public park or playground’ in G. L. c. 94C, § 32J, does the word public modify both park and playground?  Yes

2)  Is it within the purview of G. L. c. 94C, § 32J, if the incident occurs within 100 feet of a playground on private property?”   No

Photo credit:  Playground

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