Sticky note can't convict in marijuana case, state Supreme Court rules
All that stood between a mother of two young children and a felony drug record after an Oakland County narcotics team raided their home was a sticky note.
More specifically — how would the courts view this Holly Village woman who'd jotted a few words and a date on a small adhesive-backed note? The words were to remind her husband of when it would be time to harvest the medical marijuana that he used for a health condition.
The sticky note was found by narcotics agents who'd burst into the house in 2012, guns drawn, when Cynthia Ann Mazur, her husband and their two children were gone, according to court records.
In a case watched closely by medical-pot users, the Michigan Supreme Court this week reversed lower courts' decisions on what constitutes evidence regarding the sticky note. The Oakland County Circuit Court was poised to convict Mazur, 45.
But the state Supreme Court ruled 4-3 that Mazur's sticky note was not evidence that she'd violated state drug laws. Instead, the paper scrap constituted "legal drug paraphernalia," a category defined in the law as devices that facilitate the use of medical cannabis by a state-approved patient.
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Brandon Coats maintains he was improperly fired from his job at Dish Network in 2010 after testing positive for marijuana. Coats, a quadriplegic, worked as a customer service representative for the company for years.
Lower courts have repeatedly ruled in Dish Network's favor, but last year the Colorado Supreme Court agreed to hear his case. The decision could impact businesses across the state as they continue to employ not only medical marijuana users but recreational users as well.
As of now, Colorado law affords employee's little if any protection should an employer decide to fire someone who fails a drug test for marijuana.
Coats uses medical marijuana to control involuntary muscle spasms and voluntarily notified Dish Network that any drug test would come up positive for THC.
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