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Jury Backs Medical Marijuana

She Who Remembers

"Don't hate the media, become the media"
~Jello Biafra From: Richard Lake
Reply-To: stonesoupgroup@yahoogroups.com
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 10:07:48 -0500
To: stonesoupgroup@yahoogroups.com,
[stonesoupgroup] US CA: Editorial:
Jury Backs Prop. 215 Newshawk: See you in San Francisco?


Pubdate: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 Source: Orange County Register,
The (CA) Webpage:


Copyright: 2002 The Orange County
Register Contact: letters@ocregister.com
Website: ocregister.com/
Details: mapinc.org/media/321 Bookmarks:
mapinc.org/find?115 (Cannabis - California)
(Cannabis - Medicinal) JURY BACKS PROP. 215 The acquittal of "Sister" Somayah
Kambui by a Los Angeles jury on marijuana cultivation charges should serve as
yet another signal that it is time for local authorities to cooperate and work
with medical marijuana patients rather than try to prosecute them.

Although police testified that Ms. Kambui had 200 pounds of marijuana growing in her
South Los Angeles back yard - which apparently included the dirt on the roots
when the plants were pulled out of the ground - a jury acquitted her on five
counts Monday. The jury apparently believed that Ms. Kambui, who has sickle-cell
anemia and a recommendation from a licensed physician, was a bona fide patient
covered by Proposition. 215, the medical marijuana law passed by voters in 1996.

They may also have wanted to send a message to police and prosecutors that in
this time of heightened concern over terrorism they should stop harassing sick
people who are trying to exercise their rights under California law. Ms. Kambui
had plants seized in July, with no charges filed, and again in October when
she was charged. Police and prosecutors say they have a dilemma because Prop.215
(now Section 11362.5 of the Health and Safety Code) does not put a numerical
limit on the number of plants a certified patient may grow and thus they have
no guidelines.

The Modesto Bee Sunday ran a story about a Modesto man arrested
for having 150 plants in his back yard. The district attorney's office declined
to prosecute because it hasn't been able to get juries to convict people with
a doctor's recommendation on cultivation charges. Beginning March 29 we will
see how Orange County prosecutors fare with Marvin Chavez, a patient who was
growing plants in his Santa Ana back yard. The best way to handle the problem
is to set up a voluntary registration and identification system,
as San Diego recently did.

The law does not specify a number of plants, but a registration system
could set limits and provide records for police to check when deciding
whether to treat a cultivator as a patient or illicit grower.
Orange and Los Angeles Counties should study the San Diego model and
do something similar.

"What is the problem, oh Babylon?
Lack of information...mon,
That's all."

art director

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