The Denver Post
The Colorado Court of Appeals has upheld the marijuana cultivation conviction of a Longmont woman, ruling that a person designated as a medical marijuana "caregiver" must do more than just supply the drug to patients.
In a special concurring opinion, Judge Alan Loeb wrote that Colorado's consitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana "cries out for legislative action."
The case involved a woman named Stacy Clendenin, who in 2006 was charged with cultivating marijuana in a Longmont home.
Clendenin argued that the marijuana she grew in the home was then distributed to authorized patients through marijuana dispensaries.
But the appeals court ruled that simply knowing that the end user of marijuana is a patient is not enough. Instead, the court said, a care-giver authorized to grow marijuana must actually know the patients who use it.
"We conclude that to qualify as a 'primary care-giver' a person must do more than merely supply a patient who has a debilitating medical condition with marijuana," the court ruled.
The ruling, if upheld on appeal, could change the process now in place to supply the burgeoning medical marijuana industry in Colorado — if the Colorado Legislature doesn't restrict it first.
Attorney General John Suthers applauded the decision.
"I am pleased to see the Court of Appeals' has provided legal support for our case that a caregiver, under Amendment 20, must do more than simply provide marijuana to a patient," Suthers said. "I also was pleased to see the assertion in the special concurrence that Amendment 20 'cries out for legislative action.' I could not agree more. I hope the legislature will act and create a regulatory framework that gives substance to the Court of Appeals' findings."
Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?
Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.
If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The Denver Post