Not a single lawyer in Oakland County, Michigan has taken a medical marijuana case to trial with a Section 8 Defense and walked away with a “Not Guilty.”
We came closer last week than anyone else has before when a jury refused to come to a decision and the Judge declared a mistrial.
Our client, a Medical Marijuana Patient, was found in possession of just over 20 ounces of marijuana. Pursuant to the Medical Marijuana Act, he was not allowed to possess more than was reasonably necessary to treat his qualifying medical condition. After a lengthy Section 8 hearing, the Judge agreed that we had presented enough evidence to take the medical marijuana defense to the jury (which is a rarity in and of itself.)
The trial last 5 days and the jury deliberated for almost 3 full days before finally deciding that they were too deadlocked to reach a decision one way or the other. The jurors couldn’t decide: 1) Whether or not our client intended to distribute marijuana, or 2) whether our client possessed more than was reasonably necessary to treat his qualifying condition. The jury split was right down the middle – meaning 6 jurors believed he was guilty of something and 6 jurors believed he was entirely innocent.
We have no idea what the future holds with regard to this case, but one thing is for certain: We were able to convince at least 6 people on that jury that our client did not intend to distribute his marijuana and did not possess more than was was reasonably necessary. Hopefully the next time – we will convince all 12!