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Oakland County A Frontline In The Battle Against Medical Marijuana


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Oakland County continues to be one of the toughest battlefronts around medical marijuana in the state. There seem to be more high-profile cases around the issue there because County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper and County Sheriff Mike Bouchard have decided to take on medical marijuana in a very high-profile manner. But maybe they're just taking cues from the head guy. Last week, during a Michigan Town Hall Meeting in Troy, sponsored by the Oakland Press and cablecast on CMNtv, County Executive L. Brooks Patterson appeared via video saying, "That medical marijuana law is the worst piece of legislation I've ever seen."


That doesn't sound like someone who wants to make things any easier on medical marijuana patients than he has to — which brings us to the case of Barb Agro.


Agro is a 70-year-old medical marijuana patient and caregiver with debilitating arthritis and diabetes. She worked as a 911 operator for the city of Lake Orion for 38 years. She also faces charges and possible jail time for growing marijuana — but the words medical marijuana, medicine, patient and caregiver cannot be used in her defense. Why? Here are Agro's own words from an article she wrote for the Midwest Cultivator, an Ann Arbor-based medical marijuana publication:


In June of 2010, after receiving our recommendations from a physician, we began to grow 20 medical marijuana plants in the basement of our home. It is important to note that neither my husband nor I actually smoked marijuana; rather we chose to consume it as medibles, as we both found it had longer pain-relieving results.


On Aug. 25, 2010, our home, along with multiple others, including both of my sons' homes, also medical marijuana patients, was raided by masked gun-wielding officers from Oakland County Michigan's Narcotic Enforcement Task Force. In this raid our home was torn into pieces. Mattresses ripped apart, clothing, cabinets emptied, plants ripped from their pots and dirt thrown across rooms and even into our bed. Approximately $11,270 dollars was taken from our home, money that had been saved and withdrawn to purchase a vehicle. My two sons' homes were raided at the same time ...


A neighbor of my son was brave enough to leave the scene and drive to my home where he informed my husband of the raid. In his frenzied haste, my husband grabbed his car keys, leaving his wallet and our home unlocked and unsecured. After arriving to my son's residence and checking on his daughter-in-law and grandchildren to ensure they were protected he returned back home to find his house raided by the same narcotic enforcement detail.



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