Volunteers get high to help California police spot pot users

California marijuana graphic by MGN.
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SANTA ANA, Calif. (CBS) -- According to CBS Los Angeles, volunteers are stepping up to smoke pot around police officers--and it's to help out law enforcement agencies.

Edson Villegas took part in a "green lab" that was designed to help officers, prosecutors and toxicologists learn to identify signs of impairment so they can more effectively diagnose drugged driving.

"Approximately 75 percent of the DUI arrests that I make nowadays are drug impaired -- more specifically to cannabis than alcohol," Glendale Police Officer Bryan Duncan told CBS.

For the green lab, volunteers took field sobriety tests at the start of the evening and then smoked marijuana inside a tent. When they exited the tent and took the same field sobriety tests, officers were able to observe any mental or physical changes in their abilities.

"Whether it's lack of convergence in the eyes, divided attention issues, your ability to do two tasks at one time," Duncan explained.

CBS reports Chris Halsor began running similar green labs in Colorado when marijuana was legalized.

"I think we have some detection tools that are out there," he said. "There are a lot of questions of, 'Do we need better tools out there?' The science is lagging behind the policy, in part because it still remains illegal federally."