Prosecution dismissed our medical marijuana case at trial call on Tuesday, September 20, 2011, in People v. Jesse Bogardus and Sean Shannon.
Co-defendant’s counsel was Lance Rogers. I hope this is not a tactical retreat because they are still beating the bushes for additional witnesses. But, the neighbors in the back country are not responsive to the “rat off your neighbor because its your civic responsibility” pitch being made.
Wagner said his meetings with Andrus and Lopey were not to coordinate a raid of the area’s marijuana dispensaries. “That was not the purpose of our meeting,” Wagner said.
He responded to the confusion the public has over the Obama administration’s position on medical marijuana. Memos released initially after taking office seemed to indicate that President Obama was directing the Justice Department to leave medical marijuana alone, while recent memos appear to contradict that position. Wagner was clear that state laws on marijuana do not supercede federal law.
“There should be no ambiguity on the Justice Department’s position on this,” Wagner said. “There has been some confusion. The position really is that it is illegal as a matter of federal law. It’s not medicine. It’s not recognized. There is no medical marijuana defense for federal prosecution under the Controlled Substances Act. Where we are going to concentrate our resources as federal prosecutors is not on people who are truly sick. By truly sick we mean not people who say they have anxiety or a bad back.”
Wagner said that the use of marijuana for conditions such as AIDS, cancer or glaucoma, while illegal, would be considered a low priority for prosecution.
The “Wild West” days of medical marijuana dispensaries are now over, courtesy of a new law signed by Governor Jerry Brown.
The law bridges that nebulous gap between the security needs of local jurisdictions and the state’s authorization of marijuana dispensaries for medical purposes. A statement released by Assemblyman Blumenfield’s office explains that before this law, local efforts to enforce zoning, permit, and other business regulations have been stymied by lawsuits from medical marijuana advocacy groups that claim state law preempts cities from monitoring and enforcing pot shops. Blumenfield states:
“Since there are virtually no legally binding state requirements on ‘pot shops,’ this new law is a first step towards much needed reform… It will help prevent medical marijuana abuses, preserve local control, and elevate our debate about medical marijuana.”