Drug Case Against Pair Dropped

Drug Case Against Pair Dropped
Posted by CN Staff on June 02, 2007 at 05:10:31 PT
By Sara Reed
Source: Coloradoan 
Colorado -- In a decision heralded by defense attorneys as the "legally and morally right thing to do," prosecutors dropped marijuana cultivation and possession charges against a Fort Collins couple who use and provide medical marijuana to other patients.James and Lisa Masters were set to stand trial Monday morning, but instead, deputy District Attorney Michael Pierson announced during a hearing Friday afternoon that his office was dropping the case.
The dismissal came in the wake of a recent ruling by Chief District Court Judge James Hiatt that a Larimer County Drug Task Force agent illegally searched the couple's Fort Collins home Aug. 2, 2006. The two sides originally were due in court Friday to argue a defense motion to exclude the evidence seized from the home because the warrant was obtained using information gathered during the illegal search."(This was) a hearing we genuinely felt we could not win," Pierson said. "It takes away all of our evidence."However, Pierson said, it is the office's position that the dropping of the case "does not vindicate" the couple.Outside the Larimer County Justice Center after the hearing, it was quite clear the couple and their lawyers felt vindicated, declaring the result "a huge victory.""Justice has come," said Rob Corry, one of the couple's attorneys.James Masters also declared the day a victory, but also expressed some frustration."If only (police) had realized we were protected under the (Colorado) constitution," he said. "It's important they realize they can't keep knocking down peoples doors."The Masterses’ attorneys also were prepared to argue against the admissibility of the evidence seized from the couple’s home because the affidavit for the search warrant made no mention that the two told police they were medical marijuana patients and caregivers.James Masters said that before his arrest, medical marijuana helped him regain his health, only to have it deteriorate again with the stress of the case.“I got myself back to the state I wanted to be,” he said. “But (the case) reversed everything marijuana brought to me.”However, there was a more difficult side of the case, which the couple said broke them down.“The hardest part was not having our babies for eight weeks,” James Masters said, choking back tears.The couple’s daughters, 4 and 6, were removed from the home by the Larimer County Department of Human Services. The family was later reunited, and no child abuse charges were filed.Police seized 39 marijuana plants, 12 of which were ready for harvest, from the couple’s home. The couple served as caregivers with the Colorado Compassion Club, providing medical marijuana for other patients in the area. Both are also medical marijuana patients.The case was being hailed as a “test case” for the caregiver provision of the medical marijuana amendment.Voters passed Amendment 20 in November 2000, which established Colorado’s medical marijuana law.Note: Dismissal comes after it was determined agents illegally searched the couple's home.Source: Coloradoan (CO)Author: Sara ReedPublished: June 2, 2007Copyright: 2007 The Fort Collins ColoradoanWebsite: SaraReed Related Articles: High Noon - Rocky Mountain Chronicle Cites Medical Defense in Pot Case
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on October 10, 2007 at 13:13:13 PT
Update from The Coloradoan
Judge in Medical Marijuana Case Scolds State Agency***October 10, 2007A District Court judge in Fort Collins issued a strongly-worded rebuke today to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment for not complying with a court order related to a medical marijuana case.Chief Judge James Hiatt threatened the agency with a contempt citation and told an attorney from the Colorado Attorney General’s office to turn over information on medical marijuana patients for whom James and Lisa Masters of Fort Collins acted as primary caregivers.
 Complete Article:
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Comment #3 posted by afterburner on June 07, 2007 at 08:07:38 PT
We Stopped the War
We stopped the VietNam War. The Feds are losing their War on Cannabis propaganda points, their evidence and the ability to find willing jury fodder. The handwriting is on the wall. Blessed are the peacemakers!Burn the Torch of Freedom.Vaporize it!
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on June 07, 2007 at 05:35:17 PT
Colorado: A High Court Victory
Standing outside the Larimer County Justice Center on June 1, James Masters smiles publicly for the first time in months. Since being arrested last August for growing 39 pot plants inside their home, James and his wife Lisa have faced jail time and losing custody of their two daughters. Now, the county district attorney’s office has dropped its case against the medical marijuana providers, just three days before a scheduled jury trial that the Masters’ lawyers called a “test case” for Colorado’s medical marijuana law. Complete Article:
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Comment #1 posted by dongenero on June 02, 2007 at 12:10:21 PT
good news
I am glad to hear this family is reunited.Tyranny cannot win.
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