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Federal Medical Marijuana Patient Returns to Spokane

Sam Sabzehzar 2011-09-05 2 comments

On the brink of battle between the DEA and local Spokane safe access spots for medical marijuana, a Federal medical marijuana patient, one of only four in the country, returns to Spokane and shines a light on the hypocrisy of current drug law enforcement in a medical state, at a time when times are tough.

By Jessica Nuna  |  September 5, 2011

Jessica Nuna, seeing the light at the end of the tunnel for medical marijuana policy. (Photo credit

On August 25 I received some of the best news I had heard since Jerry was put in jail for probation violation: a Federal IND (Investigative New Drug) patient who receives medical marijuana from the federal government will be in town!

I talked to John Par the head of Spokane NORML he said the Irvin Rosenfeld, one of the federal medical marijuana patients, was in town and was possibly willing to do BOOK SIGNING he wanted to know if I could help set it up.

I was shocked that Irv was here in Spokane because of the current situation in town with the recent raids on medical marijuana providers.

Just last month five of the local safe access point owners in Spokane were federally indited and charged with running a drug premises.

One day before this, Jerry Labordee was put in to jail for refusing to take a sample of urine for his probation officer, and his wife was re-raided and held in handcuffed by the federal authorities on the same day.

Here I am one day back from Seattle Hempfest and being asked to put on a event for a federal medical patient; oh the strange ways the world works!

John Parr (left), Director of Spokane County NORML, and Jerry Labordee, is on a hungry strike while he remains in jail.

I started to work even on the possibility of him agreeing to do this I needed to get started on set up. After talking to John the day before I had talked with Andrea Devaney currently owner of Phat Dubs, a glass shop that is currently in the same building that Medical Herb Providers was in.

That was a confusing day with in its self as I had just left the building and they received a call saying that there was a possibility of another raid in connection with the one early that morning at Jerry’s house.

Everyone had scattered, so I was unable to get a lot of the set up and stuff done that night. It was still in the back of my mind that Irv could possibly not agree to the book signing.

The next morning I revived a call from Heidi  who works with Irv and also was involved with the Montana raids earlier this year, confirming that that Irv was willing to do a book signing.

I started to post on Facebook and Twitter to get the word out about Irvin and a lot of people did not even know there were any federal medical marijuana patients. In fact, I knew little about Irv other then what I had seen on the 60 Minutes show a few years before and the new PBS program on cannabis a week or so before.

It is hard to get even medical users to understand and believe that there is and was a federal program that provided cannabis to medical patients.

I called the other shop owners who were charged as well and Dennis Whited, who started MHP with Jerry, along with myself some other volunteers started to set up.

I was happy to see Jerry’s wife, Gloria, there also. She was making signs for the rally that was to be held the following Monday at the federal building.

It is heart breaking to see such a small framed usually feisty woman so scared for herself and her husband who was sitting in jail unable to eat in part because of a hunger strike but also because he lacks appetite to eat with out cannabis. Dennis and I went and picked up some stuff for a snack table.

While on his book tour, federal medical marijuana patient Irvin Rosendfeld stops by Spokane, Washington.

When we got back Irv and Heidi were there and ready to set up. It is amazing how comfortable they made everyone them they talked with Dennis and with Gloria.

Quite a few people showed up throughout the day and it was so interesting to hear Irvin talking about what he went through, as well as listen to theirs.

It is amazing the healing power you get just knowing that some one else is out there fighting and winning at least in part.

Irvin left some tins from the federal government that he is sent his medication in for Dennis and Jerry and others to use in the up coming trial and he was kind enough to leave a signed book for Jerry and Gloria.

Dennis and I bought a copy of the book.

Irvin has offered to be a Character Witness for Dennis since he got to meet him in person, and by doing this Dennis will be able to introduce to the jury that the federal government does supply medical marijuana to other Americans.

My heart goes out to all those affected by a flawed federal marijuana policy, and I hope that it does change one day soon, but having people like Irvin Rosenfeld by our side really does provide me with the kind of hope I forgot I had.

We really can change the world, every day we do good out there in it, and now I know we really can win!


  1. Byron Lemay

    This published book could become a good card to deal to the prosecutors during the trial.

  2. Hiedi Handford

    Hey Jessica – it was GREAT to meet you guys….but I have ONE correction. Irvin would not be a Charter witness – he would be a CHARACHTER witness…..