Mom of 4 reflects on first year in prison for $31 marijuana sale
Category: News | Posted on Mon, December, 26th 2011 by THCFinder
TAFT - Wearing prison-issue yellow clothes, Patricia Spottedcrow reflects on her first year in prison through the lens of tears and determination.
One year ago, on the week of Christmas, the first-time offender was checked into the Eddie Warrior women's prison - the first holiday away from her four young children.
"I cried and cried just thinking of my kids opening presents on Christmas and I wasn't there," she said. "This year, it's going to be any other day. I try not to keep up with days in here."
At her mother's home in Kingfisher, there is a somber tone among her children - ages 2, 4, 5 and 10.
"We're crying here too," said her mother, Delita Starr. "We'll try to make sure there is money in her account for a phone call. What else can we do?"
Spottedcrow, 26, was arrested and charged for selling $31 in marijuana to a police informant in December 2009 and January 2010. Starr, 51, was also charged.
Because children were in the home, a charge of possession of a dangerous substance in the presence of a minor was added.
In blind pleas before a judge, Spottedcrow received a 12-year sentence and her mother received a 30-year suspended sentence. Neither had prior criminal convictions.
The judge sentencing the two said she allowed Starr to avoid prison so she could care for Spottedcrow's children.
When Spottedcrow was booked, after her sentence was handed down, marijuana was found in the jacket she was wearing. She pleaded guilty to that additional charge and was sentenced to two years running concurrent with the previous sentence.
After her story was published in the Tulsa World, a groundswell of support grew. Supporters expressed concern with possible racial bias, unequal punishment among crimes, women in prison, effects on children of incarcerated parents and extreme sentences for drug offenses.
Oklahoma City attorney Josh Welch has been donating his services to fight what he calls an inequitable punishment.
In October, a Kingfisher County judge took four years off her sentence. The judge issued an order rather than allow her an appearance in court. Her attorney and supporters believe it was to avoid the crowd expected to be at the courthouse that day.
Welch said he plans to file for post-conviction relief, alleging the original attorney was ineffective and had a conflict in representing Spottedcrow and her mother. He plans to make the filing in early January and submit an early parole packet at the same time.
"We are grateful to get four years taken off her sentence but still believe the sentence is unjust and excessive," Welch said.
First time smoking weed?
Category: Culture | Posted on Mon, December, 26th 2011 by THCFinder
No worries, this guy learned after a few trial and error attempts.
Pot clubs turning to delivery With feds threatening storefronts, couriers become alternatives
Category: Dispensaries | Posted on Mon, December, 26th 2011 by THCFinder
Medithrive, a cannabis dispensary in San Francisco's Mission District that was forced to close last month, has re-emerged as a delivery-only service, part of a growing trend in California's billion-dollar medical marijuana industry that's recently come under attack by federal authorities.
Threats of property forfeiture, fines, lawsuits and raids this winter have made brick-and-mortar locations less enticing to pot entrepreneurs. Hundreds of storefronts have closed amid the new federal crackdown. Delivery services remain, offering a lower-profile, albeit more dangerous, alternative.
"It just makes sense. When you have a storefront, you're on the map. You don't have those issues with a delivery service. No one's going to know about it," said William Panze, an Oakland defense attorney who represents Northstone Organics, a delivery service based in Ukiah (Mendocino County).
On marijuana legalization, a promising year
Category: Legalization | Posted on Mon, December, 26th 2011 by THCFinder
LAST February this page argued that prohibiting marijuana was causing far more harm than good, and that Washington should legalize it for adult use. We hold this view still, and have strong hopes for progress in 2012.
A year ago, dispensaries were open across the state providing edible and smokable cannabis to bona fide patients. For the most part these shops were orderly and peaceful, though whether they were legal was doubtful.
Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, sponsored a bill for the state to legalize them, licensing growers and distributors. It was a good bill, and the Legislature passed it. But after U.S. attorneys in Seattle and Spokane warned that state employees who licensed marijuana would not be immune from federal prosecution, Gov. Chris Gregoire vetoed most of the bill.
Her action, which we thought overkill, left things in chaos. Police shut down dispensaries in Spokane, arresting recalcitrant owners as drug dealers and forcing sick people onto the black market.
In Seattle, Tacoma and a few other cities, prosecutors have bravely allowed dispensaries to stay open. Seattle has more than 100 of them. The difference here is not the law, but the discretion of those who hold power.
Kohl-Welles is readying another medical-cannabis bill, and is negotiating with the governor's office. Gregoire should take some risk on this. The science behind medical cannabis is clear, and public opinion is clear, too. In no state have federal authorities arrested state employees for doing their jobs.
To her credit, Gregoire does support medical use of marijuana, and has petitioned the federal government to allow it by reclassifying marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act. This is a petition the Obama administration should grant.
Then, there is the matter of full legalization.
On Dec. 29, a group called New Approach Washington plans to turn in signatures on Initiative 502, a measure to legalize, regulate and tax the growing, processing and sale of marijuana in Washington, allowing it for adults in small amounts. I-502 gives legislators three options: pass it into law, let it go to the November ballot, or pass an alternative that would accompany it on the ballot.
Legislators should let it go to the ballot. The people are ready: On Nov. 28, a KING-5/Survey U.S.A. poll found that 57 percent of registered voters support legalizing the adult possession of 1 ounce.
Above everything here is federal law. Kohl-Welles' bill, Gregoire's petition and I-502 all ultimately amount to lobbying the federal government, either for forbearance or change. And on issues such as this, the most powerful lobby is the entire population.
Legalization: Bring it to a vote in 2012.
Getting ready for a long night!
Category: Culture | Posted on Sat, December, 24th 2011 by THCFinder
- 166,265 Views Category: Odd
- 135,119 Views Category: Fun
- 125,051 Views Category: Culture
- 82,926 Views Category: Culture
- 79,719 Views Category: Culture
- 79,522 Views Category: Fun
- 63,933 Views Category: Culture
- 59,660 Views Category: Odd
- 53,824 Views Category: Fun
- 46,870 Views Category: Fun