Defense Witness Causes Feds To Stumble, Medical Marijuana Ordered Removed From Courtroom–Day 4 Of Kettle Falls Five Trial
The following is an article by Meghan Ridley for DOPE magazine March, 2015. See original here.
The Defense began presentation of its case Monday morning in response to the ongoing Federal prosecution of medical marijuana patients known as the Kettle Falls Five. Rhonda Harvey, her son Rolland Gregg, and his wife Michelle Gregg compose the remaining family members on trial, facing a minimum of ten years in prison if convicted.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Earl Hicks was forced to stumble and retract questioning on numerous occasions during the cross and reexaminations of witness Jeremy Kaufman, owner of consulting firm QuoVadimus. Here, Kaufman testified to being involved in over 100 licensed marijuana grows in his life. As Hicks pursued whether or not these operations were legal, Kaufman responded, “I have always had a permit to grow marijuana.” Further inquisition by Hicks pushed Kaufman to specify which regulations established these operations as legal, and as Kaufman went to clarify the difference between the medical and recreational laws in Washington State, Hicks promptly replied, “I’m withdrawing the question your honor.”
The term “medical marijuana”–as well as all related Washington State policy existing since 1998–have been deemed impermissible in the courtroom. This continues to receive harsh public scrutiny and perpetuate a semantical charade in the courtroom. In more colorful happenings, this parody of law was applied to members of the public–as displayed through objection by the Government to the “Save Medical Cannabis” sweatshirts worn by two individuals in the courtroom. In all, they objected to two sweatshirts, two pins and one t-shirt, all of which were ordered removed by Judge Thomas O. Rice. In his words, “You don’t have a first amendment right in front of this jury, in this courtroom.”
Hicks later berated Kaufman on the topics of “Cheech and Chong” and his familiarity with ZigZag papers. Not to mention more confusing marijuana mathematics, asking Kaufman, “1000 mg (of marijuana) is how many pounds?” Kaufman replied, visibly confused by the nonsensical line of questioning, “1000 milligrams is one gram.”
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