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Drug test troubles for Libertarian City Council special election candidate

Federal probation officials want activist to stop associating with his fellow "Panic Hour" members.

Tamaccio: Libertarian hopeful for at-large Council seat.
Tamaccio: Libertarian hopeful for at-large Council seat.Read more

RICHARD TAMACCIO, a/k/a Nikki Allen Poe, must see a federal judge about new drug activity before he can face the city's voters as the Libertarian candidate for a May 20 special election to fill a vacant at-large City Council seat.

Tamaccio, a marijuana-legalization activist on probation since Dec. 13, tried to beat a Feb. 25 drug test by "consuming large amounts of water," according to a probation report filed in federal court yesterday.

The report said Tamaccio then admitted that he "accidentally ate a cookie laced with marijuana" three days before.

The report also says Tamaccio admitted in an April 3 probation interview that he had used cocaine and Percocet. That interview happened one day after he became a candidate.

A hearing is scheduled for tomorrow to consider a request to modify Tamaccio's probation terms. He is already in an outpatient treatment program for the latest drug activity.

Tamaccio yesterday accused federal prosecutors and probation officials of "doing everything they can to quell my political dissent and political views."

He vowed to fight a request from probation officials to prohibit him from associating with "The Panic Hour," an activist group that holds "Smokedown Prohibition" events at Independence National Historic Park.

"It's not going to affect my campaign in any capacity," Tamaccio said of the hearing. "The fact that I'm a victim of the drug war for my political beliefs is something that I'm proud of."

Tamaccio was arrested at a Smokedown event on May 18 and later admitted to smoking marijuana there and then resisting arrest by a U.S. park ranger. He was sentenced to one year of probation.

The next Smokedown Prohibition is scheduled for Sunday, which falls on April 20 - or 4/20 - a day popular with marijuana activists to celebrate their cause.

Tamaccio was selected two weeks ago as the Libertarian Party's candidate for the election to fill the seat vacated when Councilman Bill Green, a Democrat, resigned in February to become chairman of the School Reform Commission. He has filed a ballot name-change petition to be listed as Nikki Allen Poe, a stage name he uses for comedy and activism.

The city's Democratic ward leaders selected state Rep. Ed Neilson as their special-election candidate. The Republicans selected ward leader Matt Wolfe.