“You can jail a revolutionary, but you cannot jail a revolution.” ~ Fred Hampton
By Sam Sabzehzar
In the People vs. David Rios, the jury seems to be tired of seeing the prosecution complain about the conduct in the courtroom.
For one thing, Mr. Rios, who is a medical marijuana patient and provider, has a peaceful following.
Roughly twenty supporters, most of whom are medical marijuana patients, have gathered in San Fernando to show solidarity and support for one of their own.
David Rios, who helped run a collective in California in compliance with Prop 215 and SB 420, was transporting his collective’s medicine on behalf of the collective after the plants had matured.
During what the arresting officer referred to on the stand as a ‘routine traffic stop,’ Mr. Rios found himself having to explain the circumstances of which he had roughly five pounds of dried marijuana.
Clearly in compliance with the law, and showing proper paperwork, the CHP officers returned the money they had found on him, but confiscated the freshly cultivated crops.
This was back in 2008, right after then Attorney General Jerry Brown had issued guidelines dealing with this issue, and Mr. Rios was in the process of updating their paperwork to comply with the newly written ‘rules.’
Now that Mr. Rios is facing a jury of his peers, the ‘People’ have objected to many actions by the audience in the court.
These actions have been silent, but speak loudly to the threshold of solidarity David Rios has received.
Former POW Stephanie Landa, who has spent every day in court to show support, is encouraged by the amount of insight this trial is allowing as it relates to the medical marijuana laws in California.
Mr. Rios, who spoke to Medical Marijuana 411 after court, can’t believe he has received this much attention.
There was another not-guilty verdict to come through this week, but there was also a case in Palm Springs that just ripped a family apart because of the lack of evidence allowed to be introduced to the jury.
As for Mr. Rios, things look promising.
After attempts by the people to disallow the Solidarity Ribbons, and an objection to our cameras in the court, ironically, the People have shown that they can only hope for a ‘W’ in their column if they manipulate enough of the facts, as if manipulating facts in a medical marijuana trial is worth the time, effort and money.
The jury seems to roll their eyes every time the prosector speaks at this point, as this school-yard bully using tax-dollars to attack a sick person is clearly not what the grey limitations in the law are meant to allow for.
Bill Britt, a medical cannabis expert witness, took the stand and corrected the prosecuting attorney when reiterating that a very sick person doesn’t necessarily need a ton of cannabis, and a somewhat sick person might need a whole bunch, depending on the person, their condition, and their body’s own endogenous cannabinoid system.
For lawyer, who are supposedly smart, this concept seemed to go over the head of the DA, who couldn’t stand the term ‘medical’ as it related to the plant, and refused to call cannabis it’s proper nomenclature, even after the experts would introduce the term.
After the prosecutor’s own witness, the arresting CHP officer, exposed himself to impeachment, the presiding judge had had enough and made it clear through several warnings to the D.A. that this case is important to the courts, as well as Mr. Rios, and that a fair and speedy trial will be awarded to the defendant.
For the People to object to the Fourth Branch of Government being in the court to witness injustices, they have shown their cards and they are clearly bluffing.
I will be shocked if anything other than a not-guilty verdict comes back, and when it does, you can bet we’ll be putting our request in to see just how much money was spent going after a medical marijuana case when just this week the Supreme Court made it clear that California’s prison system is already out of hand as the state plans an overhaul that will release thousands of ‘criminals.’
Hopefully, they will start with the non-violent marijuana cases, but by the way this prosecutor is playing (and he’s only taking orders) it appears they will be unwilling to release them if they are concurrently trying them as well.
An utterly useless trial and a colossal waste of resources is one thing, but to do it at the expense of another person’s life, a sick person as that, shows the pathology of the state’s prosecutorial powers and the misguided course of action they are on, which clearly set us on a crash course for a solution to overcrowding in a prison system with financial incentives, as well as political ones.