Sam Katz Busted With Weed at Philly Airport

"I'm terribly embarrassed," he tells us.

Photo by Hughe Dillon

Photo by Hughe Dillon

I smoke it. You smoke it. Your grandmother has probably smoked it. And it turns out that former mayoral candidate Sam Katz is just like the rest of us: He smokes it, too.

On Thursday morning, Katz was leaving for a fishing trip to Florida when police boarded the plane and pulled him off of it. TSA screeners had opened Katz’s checked suitcase and found marijuana and rolling papers inside.

Fortunately for Katz, 66, the amount of marijuana in question was small — less than an ounce — so instead of arresting Katz, police gave him a citation and sent him on his way.

“I’m terribly embarrassed,” says Katz. “I was looking forward to it. I am a child of the 60s and three days on a fishing boat for eight hours each day seemed like a little much. I didn’t really think anything of having it in my suitcase. But it was really dumb.”

Just a couple of years ago, Katz probably would have wound up in jail. But thanks to decriminalization, he’ll pay a $25 fine and get on with his life.

And it turns out that Katz was probably lucky. Had he been caught with the pot in Florida, he could have faced much stiffer penalties: Up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

That’s the bright side.

On the not-so-bright side, police confiscated his stash. Katz also missed his flight, but he was able to get another one and the fishing trip is still on.

“But all I’ll be smoking are my cigars,” he laments.