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Eric L. VanDussen

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  1. Michigan rejects use of medical marijuana for autism http://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2015/08/28/marijuana-medical-cannabis-pot-autism-snyder-lara-childrens-hospital/71291082/ Here is Mr. Zimmer's email address and phone number if anyone wants to contact him directly to ask him to reconsider his decision. Michael J. Zimmer Director - DEPT of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs zimmerm@michigan.gov Main: (517) 241-7124
  2. http://www.youtube.com/user/breakingthetaboofilm Narrated by Morgan Freeman (English version) & Gael Garcia Bernal (Spanish version), this groundbreaking new documentary uncovers the UN sanctioned war on drugs, charting its origins and its devastating impact on countries like the USA, Colombia and Russia. Featuring prominent statesmen including Presidents Clinton and Carter, the film follows The Global Commission on Drug Policy on a mission to break the political taboo and expose the biggest failure of global policy in the last 50 years. Produced by Sundog Pictures and Spray Filmes the film is launching here on the 7th December 2012 and will be seen on international television in 2013.
  3. My thread had links to several articles about the decision that weren't merged and they've disappeared. I wish if someone was going to merge or delete posts they would notify me before doing so. Who has the authority to do this and what is the criterion for merging posts?
  4. I'm wondering why my thread regarding King and Kolanek was deleated from the Legal Professionals section and who did it?
  5. Mich. Supreme Court makes 1st medical pot rulings - Associated Press - May 31, 2012 http://www.mlive.com/newsflash/index.ssf/story/mich-supreme-court-makes-1st-medical-pot-rulings/ac45957f55e44124abc76b14cc3543b0 DETROIT (AP) — In its first medical marijuana ruling, the Michigan Supreme Court said Thursday that a man arrested for drug manufacturing deserves another day in court to defend his outdoor, locked chain-link dog kennel as a legally proper facility in which to grow his pot. The state's highest court unanimously ruled that the law approved by voters in 2008 contains plainer language and broader protections than the way in which it was interpreted by the Michigan Court of Appeals, which said that Larry King's kennel didn't qualify has a place to keep marijuana. The Supreme Court reversed that decision and said the Shiawassee County resident who had a valid medical marijuana card was entitled to an evidentiary hearing on the matter. In another case within the same ruling, the court said that Alexander Kolanek of Oakland County needed a doctor's statement confirming a medical need for marijuana after the state law was enacted and before his 2009 arrest. That affirmed an appeals court ruling but the high court said a person accused of a marijuana-related crime has a right to assert a medical marijuana defense if the doctor's recommendation was already in hand. Kolanek, 25, has said he smoked marijuana to deal with problems related to Lyme disease. He talked to a doctor about the medical benefits of pot before voters approved its legal use but didn't get the doctor's authorization until after an arrest for possessing marijuana. Thursday's decisions clarify a state law that allows medical marijuana under some circumstances but has caused much confusion. Marijuana can be used to alleviate the symptoms of certain illnesses if someone sees a doctor and gets a state-issued card. People can possess up to 2 ½ ounces of ready-to-use marijuana and have up to 12 plants in a locked area. King, 55, who has chronic back pain, was charged with drug crimes after Owosso police discovered marijuana growing in a dog kennel, which had a locked, 6-foot-high fence and was partly covered with black plastic. Attorney Dan Korobkin of the Michigan chapter of American Civil Liberties Union said in a statement that it's the first major decision in favor of a medical marijuana patient in the state. "This decision makes it very clear: A patient who uses marijuana to treat their medical conditions with the approval by their doctor should not be punished for mere technical errors regarding the number of plants or how they were secured," he said.
  6. MMMA shields patients from prosecution, Supreme Court rules - Detroit Free Press - June 1, 2012 By Dawson Bell Detroit Free Press Lansing Bureau - http://www.freep.com/article/20120601/NEWS06/206010482/Michigan-s-medical-marijuana-law-shields-patients-from-prosecution-Supreme-Court-rules?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE LANSING -- In what advocates for Michigan's medical marijuana law characterized as a clear-cut victory for patient rights, the state Supreme Court ruled Thursday the state's voter-approved statute protects patients from prosecution even if they have not sought a marijuana registry card. In its first major ruling on the medical marijuana law, the unanimous court said the law expressed the voters' "intent to permit both registered and unregistered patients to assert medical reasons for using marijuana as a defense to any prosecution involving marijuana." The ruling came in two cases out of Oakland and Shiawassee counties in which defendants arrested on marijuana charges argued they were immune from prosecution under the statute. Karen O'Keefe, an attorney with the Washington, D.C.-based Marijuana Policy Project, which sponsored the 2008 medical marijuana initiative, called the court's ruling "great." "That's the way we wrote it," she said. In the Oakland County case, the court said the law allows a person arrested on a marijuana-related offense to assert a medical marijuana defense as long the use of marijuana was recommended by a doctor after the law was enacted and before the arrest occurred. But for the defendant in that case, Alexander Kolanek, the court said he could not avail himself of the so-called affirmative defense because his doctor's recommendation came after his arrest. The affirmative defense allows a person who has been certified to use medical marijuana to use that certification as a defense against prosecution. In the Shiawassee case, the Supreme Court said defendant Larry King was entitled to an evidentiary hearing on the question of whether he met the requirements of a section of the law providing protection to unregistered patients. King's attorney John Minock said the decision was a clear-cut victory for King and other medical marijuana patients, and a rebuke to overly zealous police and prosecutors who have attempted to enforce the marijuana law in the most restrictive way possible. But Joy Yearout, spokeswoman for state Attorney General Bill Schuette, disagreed. Thursday's ruling "does not legalize marijuana broadly," she said. Registered patients remain subject to limits on the amount of marijuana they can grow or possess. And all medical marijuana users are required to obtain a doctor's certification before using marijuana, she said. But the ruling clearly upholds the rights of patients to possess and use marijuana, whether registered with the state Department of Community Health or not. O'Keefe said state certification "still makes sense" for most patients because it allows medical marijuana users to avoid the stress and expense of arrest and prosecution. But the Supreme Court properly determined that the law provides "a safety net" for all legitimate patients, she said. The case decided Thursday was one of several medical marijuana cases pending in Michigan's appellate courts. Still unresolved are the issues of dispensaries and whether patient-to-patient sales are permitted under the law. Almost all dispensaries closed last year after Schuette issued an opinion that they were not permitted. But Matthew Abel, a leading medical marijuana defense attorney, said that he believes Thursday's ruling will "disappoint a lot of prosecutors who want to shut it down altogether." Abel said the Supreme Court has sent a clear signal that medical marijuana is legal in Michigan.
  7. Here are the links to PDFs of the Supreme Court decisions overturning the Court of Appeals in People v King and People v Kolanek: http://courts.michigan.gov/supremecourt/Clerk/11-12-Term-Opinions/142695.pdf The court held, in part, that: We granted leave in these cases to consider substantive and procedural aspects of the affirmative defense of medical use of marijuana under § 8, MCL 333.26428, of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA).1 Given the plain language of the statute, we hold that a defendant asserting the § 8 affirmative defense is not required to establish the requirements of § 4, MCL 333.26424, which pertains to broader immunity granted by the act. The Court of Appeals erred by reaching the opposite conclusion in People v King,2 and we therefore reverse the Court of Appeals’ judgment in King. Further, to establish the affirmative defense under § 8, we hold that a defendant must show under § 8(a)(1) that the physician’s statement was made after enactment of the MMMA but before commission of the offense. The Court of Appeals reached this conclusion in People v Kolanek,3 and we affirm the Court of Appeals in this regard. However, the Court of Appeals also held that defendant could reassert the affirmative defense at trial, despite his failure at the evidentiary hearing to establish the existence of a timely physician’s statement under § 8(a)(1). This was error, and we reverse that portion of the Court of Appeals’ holding.
  8. Here are the links to PDFs of the Supreme Court decisions overturning the Court of Appeals in People v King and People v Kolanek: http://courts.michigan.gov/supremecourt/Clerk/11-12-Term-Opinions/142695.pdf The court held, in part, that: We granted leave in these cases to consider substantive and procedural aspects of the affirmative defense of medical use of marijuana under § 8, MCL 333.26428, of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA).1 Given the plain language of the statute, we hold that a defendant asserting the § 8 affirmative defense is not required to establish the requirements of § 4, MCL 333.26424, which pertains to broader immunity granted by the act. The Court of Appeals erred by reaching the opposite conclusion in People v King,2 and we therefore reverse the Court of Appeals’ judgment in King. Further, to establish the affirmative defense under § 8, we hold that a defendant must show under § 8(a)(1) that the physician’s statement was made after enactment of the MMMA but before commission of the offense. The Court of Appeals reached this conclusion in People v Kolanek,3 and we affirm the Court of Appeals in this regard. However, the Court of Appeals also held that defendant could reassert the affirmative defense at trial, despite his failure at the evidentiary hearing to establish the existence of a timely physician’s statement under § 8(a)(1). This was error, and we reverse that portion of the Court of Appeals’ holding.
  9. U.S. APPEALS COURT'S ORAL ARGUMENTS IN CASE CHALLENGING DEA’S DENIAL OF LICENSE FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA PRODUCTION FACILITY - Listen to the audio of the May 11, 2012 oral arguments here: http://www.maps.org/mmj/dealawsuit/Craker_DEA_FirstCircuit_09-1220_11May12.mp3 Prof. Craker's December 15, 2011 opening brief can be viewed here: http://www.maps.org/mmj/dealawsuit/Craker_Appeals_OpeningBrief15Dec11.pdf The Drug Enforcement Administration's March 22, 2012 response brief can be viewed here: http://www.maps.org/mmj/dealawsuit/Craker_FirstCircuit_DEAResponseBrief22March12.pdf Prof. Craker's May 4, 2012 reply brief can be viewed here: http://www.maps.org/mmj/dealawsuit/2012.05.04_Craker_Reply.pdf Here's a full timeline re: Craker v DEA: http://www.maps.org/research/mmj/dea_timeline/
  10. Ruling sends Michigan medical marijuana law up in smoke - April 22, 2012 ( http://www.livingstondaily.com/article/20120422/OPINION01/204220326/Denise-Pollicella-guest-column-Ruling-sends-Michigan-medical-marijuana-law-up-smoke ) In five brief pages full of legal reasoning and bereft of common sense, the Michigan Court of Appeals has, for all intents and purposes, rendered the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act useless. On April 17, the court published its opinion in People v. Koon, holding that the MMMA does not contain an exemption for drivers under the state's criminal code, which prohibits operating a vehicle with any amount of a Schedule I controlled substance in your system. The problem is that, unlike the other Schedule I drugs such as heroin and meth, the main active compound in marijuana, known as THC, stores in your fat cells, keeping it in your body for weeks, well after its affects have worn off, and no accurate test has been developed to determine when active THC becomes a harmless byproduct. The effect of this decision, which flies in the face of a 2010 Michigan Supreme Court ruling, is that you cannot drive a car after ingesting medicinal marijuana without a presumption that you are breaking the law. Yes, you heard right. You can't be a medical marijuana patient and drive a car. With legislation pending that would make marijuana patient card information available to law enforcement, the card could now, by itself, be used as prima facie evidence of impaired driving. This decision is just one in a growing line of Michigan court rulings that not only clearly ignore the intent of the MMMA, but seem determined to strictly construe it out of existence. Let's be clear. Marijuana is a plant that has been used as a medicine for thousands of years but, like any other drug, can be abused and used recreationally. The MMMA simply sought to carve out protection against criminal prosecution for seriously ill people or those with chronic pain to use this plant as an alternative to traditional drugs. Sixty-three percent of Michigan's voters in 2008 thought it was a good idea. Voters and legislatures in 18 other states do, too. Seventy-five percent of the country agrees. Since its inception, however, the MMMA has received no support from our elected officials and nothing but unadulterated attacks by law enforcement and the courts. Very sick people, like Joseph Casias, whose life was quite literally saved by marijuana, but was then fired from his job for it, have become victims of a law meant to protect them. Take a good look around. More than 130,000 people in Michigan are medical marijuana patients, and for every one with a card, there are five more who haven't registered, either because they have been using it for so long they don't want to bother, or because they are justifiably scared that they will be targeted. These aren't teenage potheads experimenting in the high school parking lot. These are your neighbors, your co-workers, your friends, your parents. Koon finally takes the MMMA to its ridiculous conclusion, undermining the Michigan electorate and stating very plainly that it is up to the Legislature, not the courts, to fix this hazy law. So, for those of you fed up with watching patients being arrested, fired, kicked out of their housing and separated from their children, for those of you tired of watching law enforcement spend valuable time and your tax money flying helicopters over open fields and clogging the courts with nonviolent, victimless possession charges, and for those of you shaking your heads at the incredulous way your local and state elected representatives have utterly failed to represent you, there's a way to fix this. It's called a voting booth. Denise A. Pollicella, managing partner of Cannabis Attorneys of Mid-Michigan and a graduate of Wayne State University Law School, is the mother of two and practices corporate law, business transactions and medical marijuana law in Livingston County. She has degrees in political science and French from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and is a founding member of the Michigan chapter of Mothers United to End the War on Drugs. E-mail your comments to letters@livingstondaily.com.
  11. Listen to Points North at: http://ipr.interloch...e/episode/19385 Zero Tolerance For Driving Under The Influence Of Marijuana - Interlochen Public Radio - April 20, 2012 Peter Payette interviews Grand Traverse Circuit Court Judge Philip E. Rodgers and Karen O'Keefe from the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). Judge Rodgers explains his reasoning for ruling that police needed to prove that Rodney Koon was actually impaired by Marijuana when he was driving. (I've attached a PDF of Judge Rodger's November 16, 2010 opinion) Karen O'Keefe, discusses the fallout of the Court of Appeals decision in People v Koon. (The Court of Appeals April 17 opinioncan be found here: http://coa.courts.mi..._301443.opn.pdf )
  12. I've attached below my most up-to-date list of about 30+ MMMA appellate cases that I'm aware of, with links to opinions and oral argument videos. I'm certain that there may be some MMMA appeals out there that I don't know about. If anyone is aware of any other cases that need to be added to my appellate list, please send me an email or call me with the case information, a defendant's last name, or contact info for the attorneys/prosecutors that are working on them. Also, I have most of the briefs and some transcripts from nearly all of the MMMA cases that were filed with the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court. If anyone wants documents on a specific case, let me know. -- Eric L. VanDussen Videographer & Freelance Journalist MMMA APPELLATE CASE LIST – (as of April 19, 2012) PEOPLE v BARBARA JEAN AGRO COA Case No: 302949 Before: Deborah A. Servitto, Henry William Saad, Pat M. Donofrio COA Interlocutory appeal denied on March 31, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2011/302949(12)_order.pdf COA Case No: 305725 – Jury conviction claim of appeal filed – COA Panel not assigned yet Motion for new trial was denied by Oakland Co. Circuit Court on April 4, 2012 OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v TED ALLEN ANDERSON COA case No: 300641 – SCt Case No: 143339 Before: HOEKSTRA, P.J., and MURRAY and M. J. KELLY, JJ. COA publication date: June 7, 2011 - with M.J. Kelley issuing a concurring opinion: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110607_c300641_46_85o-300641-final.pdf & http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110607_c300641_47_85c-300641-final.pdf SCt Abeyance Order entered on September 26, 2011 – Pending SCt decisions in P v King & Kolanek http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20110926_s143339_55_143339_2011-09-26_or.pdf COA May 10, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/25080064 KALAMAZOO CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v RYAN ANDREW BURKE COA Case No: 292616 – SCt Case No: 139643 Before: Jane E. Markey PJ, Jane M. Beckering, Douglas B. Shapiro COA unpublished opinion date: 09-03-10 – denying application for leave to appeal: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2010/292616(26)_order.pdf LIVINGSTON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v RYAN MICHAEL BYLSMA COA Case No: 302762 – SCt Case No: 144120 Before: GLEICHER, P.J., and HOEKSTRA and STEPHENS, JJ. COA publication date: September 27, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110927_c302762_41_302762.opn.pdf Supreme Court Application for Leave to Appeal was filed on November 22, 2011 – still pending COA September 07, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/28921863 KENT COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v KEITH JAMES CAMPBELL COA Case No: 291345 – SCt Case No: 141707 Before: O’CONNELL, P.J., and METER and OWENS, JJ. COA publication date: August 26, 2010: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20100713_c291345_51_120o-291345-final.pdf SCt denial of application for leave to appeal date: October 8, 2010 http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20101008_s141707_61_141707_2010-10-08_or.pdf OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v HOWARD EARL CARROLL COA case No: 297541 Before: MARKEY, P.J., and FITZGERALD and SHAPIRO, JJ. COA unpublished opinion date: May 31, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110531_c297541_50_297541.opn.pdf WAYNE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v BRANDON MCQUEEN & MATTHEW TAYLOR, d/b/a COMPASSIONATE APOTHECARY, LLC COA Case No: 301951 – SCt Case No: 143824 Before: MURRAY, P.J., and HOEKSTRA and STEPHENS, JJ. COA publication date: August 23, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110823_c301951_67_123o-301951-final.pdf COA June 7, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/24835605 ISABELLA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v FREDRICK WAYNE DAGIT COA Case No: 302164 Before Michael J. Kelly, Peter D. O'Connell, Patrick M. Meter COA Interlocutory appeal denied on July 22-11: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2011/302164(8)_order.pdf INGHAM COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v MICHAEL SCOTT DANTO & ANDREW BENJAMIN NATER COA Case No: 302986, 302991, 303064 & 303525 Before: MARKEY, P.J., and SAAD and GLEICHER, JJ. with Gleicher concurring/dissenting COA publication date: November 8, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20111108_c302986_58_302986.opn.pdf & http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20111108_c302986_59_302986p.opn.pdf COA August 10, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/28041839 OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v JONATHON FINNEY COA Case No: 296329 & 297537 Before: Peter D. O'Connell, Donald S. Owens, Stephen L. Borrello COA Interlocutory appeal denied on June 29, 2010: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2010/296329(10)_order.pdf & http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2010/297537(10)_order.pdf MIDLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v TONY ALLEN GREEN COA Case No: 308133 Before: COA panel not assigned yet Prosecutor claim of appeal filed on 01-19-12 Defendant’s motion to hold in abeyance filed on 04-16-12 BARRY COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v JACK MCDONALD & EDWARD J. BENOIT, d/b/a THE HEALTH CENTER COA Case No: 303575 Before: Karen M Fort Hood, PJ, and Mark J Cavanagh and Kirsten Frank Kelly, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: April 10, 2012: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20120410_c303575_28_303575.opn.pdf ALPENA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v BARBARA JEAN HUNTER COA Case No: 302247 Before: SHAPIRO, P.J., and WILDER and MURRAY, JJ. COA granted Prosecutor’s Interlocutory Appeal on December 8, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20111208_c302247_35_302247.opn.pdf INGHAM COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ARCHIE DARREL KIEL COA Case No: 301427 Before: Thomas Fitzgerald, Kurtis T. Wilder and Christopher M. Murray, JJ. COA Abeyance Order entered on March 08, 2012 - Pending the SCt decision in People v King: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2012/301427(46)_order.pdf Circuit Ct. July 15, 2011 Judge’s Chambers Trial video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/20436632 Circuit Ct. October 6, 2011 Sentencing Hearing video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/20445509 Circuit Ct. May 4, 2011 Motion for New Trial video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/23406130 KALKASKA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v LARRY STEVEN KING COA Case No: 294682 – SCt Case No: 142850 Before: SAWYER, P.J., and FITZGERALD and SAAD, JJ., with Fitzgerald dissenting COA publication date: February 3, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110203_c294682_45_21o-294682-final.pdf & http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110203_c294682_46_21d-294682-final.pdf Supreme Court’s January 12, 2012 oral argument video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/35060651 SHIAWASSEE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ALEXANDER EDWARD KOLANEK COA Case No: 295125 – SCt Case No: 142712 Before: MURPHY, C.J., and METER and SHAPIRO, JJ. COA publication date: January 11, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110111_c295125_30_2o-295125-final.pdf Supreme Court’s January 12, 2012 oral argument video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/35062545 OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v RODNEY KOON COA Case No: 301443 Before: SAWYER, P.J., and O’CONNELL and RONAYNE KRAUSE, JJ. COA publication date: April 17, 2012: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20120417_c301443_50_301443.opn.pdf COA February 8, 2012 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/36475549 GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v JAMES NICHOLSON COA Case No: 306496 Before: William C. Whitbeck, PJ, and David H. Sawyer and Joel P Hoekstra, JJ. COA order granting defendant leave to appeal dated: December 16, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2011/306496(13)_order.pdf COA decision pending – no prosecutor’s brief – no oral arguments from either party OTTAWA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ANTHONY ORLANDO II COA Case No: 303644 Before: O’CONNELL, P.J., and SAWYER and TALBOT, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: March 20, 2012: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20120320_c303644_32_303644.opn.pdf LAPEER COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v JASON JOHN PETERS COA Case No: 288219 – SCt Case No: 140645 Before: Bandstra, P.J. and Sawyer and Owens, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: January 21, 2010: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20100121_c288219_38_288219.opn.pdf SCt denial of Defendant’s application for leave to appeal dated: July 15, 2010 http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20100715_s140645_43_140645_2010-07-15_or.pdf TUSCOLA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ERIC JAMES PETERSON COA Case No: No. 296072 Before: O’CONNELL, P.J., and K.F. KELLY and RONAYNE KRAUSE, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: April 12, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110412_c296072_31_296072.opn.pdf CALHOUN COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v CHASON WILLIAM-GREGORY POINTER COA Case No: 302295 & 302795 Before: Stephen L. Borello, P.J., Kathleen Jansen and Elizabeth L. Gleicher Prosecutor claim of appeal brief filed on May 25, 2011 COA Order remand to circuit for determination of eligibility for appointed attorney: March, 20, 2012: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2012/302795(29)_order.pdf GENESEE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v BRIAN BEBOUT REED COA Case No: 296686 Before: OWENS, P.J., and O’CONNELL and METER, JJ. COA publication date: August 30, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110830_c296686_31_296686.opn.pdf MONTMORENCY COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ROBERT LEE REDDEN & TOREY ALISON CLARK COA Case No: 295809 & 295810 – SCt Case No: 142044 & 142045 Before: O’CONNELL, P.J., and METER and OWENS, JJ., with O’Connell concurring COA publication date: September 14, 2010: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20100914_c295809_44_138o-295809-final.pdf & http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20100914_c295809_45_138c-295809-final.pdf SCt Order granting Defendant’s motion to withdraw appeal: June 22, 2011 http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20110622_s142044_61_142044_2011-06-22_or.pdf OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v DAVID RODRIGUEZ COA Case No: 298398 Before: Joel P. Hoekstra, P.J., Jane M. Beckering, Douglas B. Shapiro COA order denying Defendant’s application for leave to appeal: January 18, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/coa/public/orders/2011/298398(16)_order.pdf KALAMAZOO CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v SYLVESTER WILSON VANDERBUTTS COA Case No: 299347 Before: WILDER, P.J., and HOEKSTRA and BORRELLO, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: December 13, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20111213_c299347_51_299347.opn.pdf COA November 8, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/31957324 CASS COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v BENJAMIN CURTIS WALBURG COA Case No: 295497 – SCt Case No: 142875 Before: TALBOT, P.J., and SAWYER and M. J. KELLY, JJ. COA unpublished opinion dated: February 10, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110210_c295497_39_295497.opn.pdf SCt Abeyance Order entered on June 22, 2011 – Pending SCt decisions in P v King & Kolanek http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/sct/public/orders/20110622_s142875_43_142875_2011-06-22_or.pdf OTTAWA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v GARY J. WATKINS & ERIC A. WATKINS COA Case No: 301771 & 301772 – SCt Case No: 143572 Before: FORT HOOD, P.J., and DONOFRIO and RONAYNE KRAUSE, JJ. COA unpublished opinion date: June 21, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110621_c301771_46_301771.opn.pdf SCt Application for Leave to Appeal filed on August 15, 2011 OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v ERIC A. WATKINS & GARY J. WATKINS COA Case No: 302558 & 302559 Before: M. J. KELLY, P.J., and O’CONNELL and SERVITTO, JJ. COA unpublished opinion date: August 11, 2011: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20110811_c302558_44_302558.opn.pdf COA July 13, 2011 oral arguments video can be viewed here: http://vimeo.com/26443056 OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT PEOPLE v CLINICAL RELIEF defendants (see below) PEOPLE v BARBARA MIRA JOHNSON – COA Case No: 308104 PEOPLE v ANTHONY JAMES AGRO – COA Case No: 308105 PEOPLE v RYAN MICHAEL FLEISSNER – COA Case No: 308106 PEOPLE v BARBARA JEAN AGRO – COA Case No: 308109 PEOPLE v RYAN DANIEL RICHMOND – COA Case No: 308110 PEOPLE v MATTHEW CURTIS – COA Case No: 308111 PEOPLE v NICHOLAS AGRO – COA Case No: 308113 Appeal briefs have not yet been filed with the COA – waiting on transcripts OAKLAND COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT
  13. The COA ruled, in part, that: "This case presents the question whether the “zero tolerance” provision of MCL 257.625(8), which prohibits operating a motor vehicle with any amount of a Schedule 1 controlled substance in the driver’s body, still applies if the driver used marijuana under the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA).1 We conclude that it does." http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/opinions/final/coa/20120417_c301443_50_301443.opn.pdf The link to the opinion is below and you can watch the Feb. 8 People v Koon oral arguments in the Court of Appeals here: 301443 PEOPLE OF MI V RODNEY LEE KOON Panel: DHS PDO AK Lower Court: GRAND TRAVERSE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, No. 2010-028194-AR Opinion - Authored - Published (DHS) http://coa.courts.mi..._301443.OPN.PDF
  14. This Court of Appeals opinion was released yesterday: http://coa.courts.mi.gov/documents/OPINIONS/FINAL/COA/20120410_C303575_28_303575.OPN.PDF The opinion says, in part, that: "McQueen clearly compels the result in this case – the medical use of marihuana does not include patient-to-patient sales of marihuana." Here are some articles pertaining to this case that ran previously: http://www.alpenanow.com/index.php/2011/02/18/alpena%E2%80%99s-1st-medical-marijuana-dispensary-to-open-soon/ http://www.alpenanow.com/index.php/2011/03/15/a-%E2%80%9Cblack%E2%80%9D-day-for-alpena%E2%80%99s-medical-marijuana-dispensary/ http://www.alpenanow.com/index.php/2011/03/17/local-medical-marijuana-dispensaryto-remain-open-for-now/ http://www.alpenanow.com/index.php/2011/03/25/alpena-dispensary-must-stop-patient-to-patient-sales/
  15. By Eric L .VanDussen - March 30, 2011 - http://www.examiner.com/headline-in-traverse-city/michigan-s-supreme-court-to-decide-who-can-sell-medical-marihuana Michigan’s Supreme Court (SCt) released an order on Wednesday indicating that they will ultimately decide whether “Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (MMMA) … permits patient-to-patient sales of marihuana.” The high court agreed to review “the August 23, 2011 judgment of the Court of Appeals” that found such activities to be a public nuisance and in violation of Michigan’s Public Health Code. The Court of Appeals’ (COA) ruling caused many medical marihuana dispensary-type businesses to voluntarily close their doors. It also emboldened law enforcement agencies throughout the state to pursue criminal and civil actions against medical marihuana ventures that dared to remain open. The controversial case at issue originated in 2010, when the Isabella County Prosecutor’s office asked a circuit court judge to issue an injunction against the Compassionate Apothecary (CA) in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan. On December 16, 2010, Circuit Judge Paul H. Chamberlain issued an order declining to issue an injunction. Judge Chamberlain opined that the CA “would suffer a great hardship if this court enjoined them from operating their business because not only would they lose their business and property, but they would suffer such loss despite conforming to the laws of this state … The public owns a large interest in this case because the same public voted to enact the MMMA, which lends support for its interest in providing a system by which registered qualifying patients may engage in the medical use of marihuana to alleviate their debilitating medical conditions and symptoms associated with such conditions.” Isabella County’s prosecutor argued in his appellate brief to the COA that the MMMA, “clearly did not intend to allow the operation of dispensaries under the guise of patient to patient transfers. The [MMMA] intended to create a relationship between qualifying patients and registered caregivers as means of obtaining medicinal marihuana.” The CA countered in their COA brief that if the “[MMMA] wished to require a connection through the Department’s registration process to the patient from which the registered caregiver is receiving compensation, it could have easily said so… It does not. Accordingly, the converse is true; any registered qualifying patient may provide compensation to any registered primary caregiver for costs associated with assisting that registered qualifying patient in the medical use of marihuana.” Michigan’s Attorney General (AG) filed an amicus brief with the COA arguing that the CA’s “business activities of facilitating the transfer, delivery or sale of marihuana between registered qualifying patients and between registered primary caregivers and qualifying patients not in a registered relationship with the caregivers are not protected by the [MMMA]. Because [the CA’s] activities are unprotected, they violate other existing laws and are illegal.” The Michigan Association of Compassion Centers (MACC) was also allowed to file an amicus brief. MACC argued in their brief that the “sale of marihuana between Patients and Caregivers is not illegal. The Controlled Substances Act makes it illegal for individuals to possess, manufacture, and distribute marihuana but does not make it illegal for them to sell marihuana.” On June 7, 2011, the COA heard oral arguments pertaining to the CA appeal. COA Judge Cynthia Stephens asked Michigan’s Assistant Attorney General when “a patient, who is a registered patient, gives another patient the product – with or without compensation – who then gets prosecuted?” Assistant AG Heather Meingast responded, stating the person that would be prosecuted was the “selling patient, or the transferor patient would be subject to prosecution… a patient cannot assist other patients through the delivery of medical marihuana because that activity is solely delegated to a registered primary caregiver…” The COA’s August 23, 2011 opinion found that the, “operation of CA is a public nuisance and must be enjoined… Because defendants possess marihuana, and they possess it with the intent to deliver it to CA members, defendants’ operation of CA is in violation of the [Public Health Code]. Further, their violation of the PHC is not excused by the MMMA because defendants do not operate CA in accordance with the provisions of the MMMA. Through CA, defendants actively participate in the “sale” of marihuana between CA members, but the “medical use” of marihuana does not include the “sale” of marihuana. In addition, even if defendants were engaged in the “medical use” of marihuana, they would not be entitled to the immunity granted by § 4(i) because defendants are not assisting registered qualifying patients with “using or administering” marihuana.” The CA filed their SCt application for leave to appeal on October 4, 2011. They argue within their brief that, “Under the guise of legal reasoning, the Court of Appeals engaged in judicial activism and issued an opinion invalidating protections embodied in a law passed by 63% of Michigan voters. The Court of Appeals personal opinions are so pervasive that not one medical marihuana case decided by that court has returned a decision in favor of a defendant. This is not accidental. Because of this activism, thousands of qualifying patients are left without adequate access to medicine legal for them to consume in Michigan. Also as a result of this activism, businesses such as CA have shuttered their doors in fear of being criminally prosecuted for engaging in conduct - patient-to-patient transfers - that comports with the statutory language, but that the Court of Appeals has now deemed illegal without a statutory basis upon which to ground its opinion. Instead, the Court of Appeals has used a broad brush to paint all "dispensaries" illegal. The unsurprising upheaval that occurred as a result of this blatant judicial activism cannot be countenanced by this Court, and the unprecedented maneuver of denying medication to qualifying patients and closing businesses with the stroke of a pen cries out for review.” The SCt has not yet set a date to hear oral arguments in this appeal. Their order, which was released on Wednesday, states that the “Attorney General and the Michigan Association of Compassion Centers are invited to file briefs amicus curiae. Other persons or groups interested in the determination of the issues presented in this case may move the Court for permission to file briefs amicus curiae.” (Anyone who is interested in obtaining documents referred to in this article can contact Eric L. VanDussen directly at: ericlvandussen@gmail.com – you can watch the COA oral arguments at: )-- Eric L. VanDussen Videographer & Freelance Journalist (231) 651-9189
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