Courts Taketh Away, People Giveth . . . A Lesson About Juries

I count Michael Komorn amongst my good friends.  He is the same Michael Komorn who is a board member of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Association. We share several things in common:  we both grew up in metro Detroit, grew up in the small Jewish community, married local girls, have young children and live locally.  We are both vegan.  And we are both lawyers.  I have taken a lead role in the defense of the Herbal Remedies/Everybody’s Cafe Case o/k/a the Waterford Medical Marijuana case.  He represents someone in this case as well.

Foxholes Form Friendships

Together he and I have been in the foxhole of the defense of the medical marijuana community.  A friendship.  A bond is formed in battle.  We have certainly formed one.  So as I was reading another disappointing Court of Appeals decision on Medical Marijuana in a case that my office did not handle and received an uplifting text from Michael:

slayed the dragon was the subject.

I knew what it meant.  Mike had been in a slugfest of a trial in Livingston County. The trial was hard.  The rulings seemed maddening.  A case involving a claim that a patient was using medical marijuana and had the remnants of THC in his system should include discussions about the medical marijuana registry card, the patients condition, the legality of the medical use, etc?  According to Mike, no . . . the Court disagreed — none of those things was relevant.  Yet, the jury, Mike relayed, saw the truth — his client was found Not Guilty.  Amen.  Kudos to Mike. But his victory speaks to a bigger issue —

Hostility from the Bench, Law Enforcement

The bench, bar, law enforcement, judiciary seem to be so hostile to this law.  Why?  What is it about this plant?  This weed?  The people who swear by it that drives the political powers that be so nuts!  Oxycontin vs Marijuana.  If forced dot choose, they’d select Oxycontin.   In my opinion, a “legal” drug that appears more addictive and dangerous than crack.  I don’t know . . . but the hostility is there.  I fight it everyday.  I am a Michigan Medical Marijuana Lawyer.  I am a high profile lawyer — hostility, criticism, envy, jealousy and a desire by the powers that be to bring me down or make an example of me is anticipated.  But patients deserve better.

The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled in People v King that an enclosed, locked area does not include an enclosed, locked pen in King’s private, locked backyard.  Don’t ask me . . . rather than analyze King’s intent, the COA micro-analyzed each individual word in the MMMA and ruled against him.  Sad.  The lesson —

I believe in people.  Citizens judges.  Not jaded.  Interested in the human story.  Interested in Justice and the right result.  The jury saw the justice in Mike’s argument.  The jury saw the injustice in the charges that Mike’s client was facing.  G-d bless juries and the jury trial.  G-dspeed Mike and thank you for reminding us why jury trials are so important.

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