Michigan Supreme Court Protects Medical Marijuana Patients

May 22, 2013 , , , , ,

In a crucial win for patients in Michigan, the state Supreme Court ruled yesterday that the state’s zero tolerance driving under the influence law does not apply to medical marijuana patients when it is based on the mere presence of THC in a patient’s blood stream. Because THC can remain in a person’s system for days after it is consumed, the only other result would have meant that thousands of medical marijuana patients would be driving illegally simply for having used their medicine hours or days earlier.

Rodney Koon
Rodney Koon

Rodney Koon — a medical marijuana patient — was stopped while driving and later accused of a DUI because he had THC in his system. He said he had not used his medicine in six hours. The state Supreme Court found that under the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act — which was drafted by MPP — a registered patient cannot be penalized or arrested for the “internal possession” of marijuana, so long as the patient complies with the requirements of the law. The initiative’s protections trump the state’s zero tolerance law for registered patients. The court noted the law does not allow patients to drive when they are under the influence of marijuana.

10 responses to “Michigan Supreme Court Protects Medical Marijuana Patients”

  1. This is just another chipping away at the illogical fear induced aura that surrounds marijuana. We voted to deem it medicine for thousands of citizens yet what other medicine has had to adhere to the comical “guidelines” the State of Michigan imposed on medical marijuana? Still think calling marijuana medical is a joke? A recent 5 year study suggest that marijuana could be used to control blood sugar. Yet another positive study of the use of marijuaua. But you know, I am at the point where I am tired of defending marijuana. Let those who believe that alcohol does not need an alternative choice, a safer choice, just go on using alcohol. Soon the insurance companies of America will begin to see actual data that links the use of marijuana to more safer and responsible behavour, less risk taking and better decision making and reasoning while people are using marijuana vs. alcohol. Just the fact that no one dies while using marijuana while thousands die while using alcohol should, by itself, be reason enough to accuse the Federal government of murder everyday they continue this crazy marijuana prohibition. Give America a SAFER choice and sit back and watch the mortality rates declines, the domestic abuse rates decline, the auto accident rates decline… yes, marijuana is that much safer than alcohol and has the potential to do all of that and more. The alcohol industry should be shaking in their boots, the genie is out of the bottle forever and it can only bode rough times ahead for the alcohol industry and that is a wonderful thing. Did you know that alcohol is the number one date rape drug in the world? Number one also at American colleges. marijuana is not. Have a daughter? Think about that. The damage and death from alcohol seems to be just collateral damage to the industry, ourselves, and to our federal government also. We just don’t seem to care enough to do something about it. The alcohol indusry has done a gruesome job of hoodwinking America into accepting all the death and destruction that is associated with alcohol use as just irresponsible behavour by a few but I believe the jig is up. The internet has made many of us so much wiser that it is increasinly harder to bambozzle an entire population. Our government has yet to realize this, they are still trying to bambozzle us.

  2. Haha, I would of loved to see the police officer’s face when he got the news.

    Just like with anything, it’s about the “abuse” and not the “use” of it.

    A nice win for Rodney though!

  3. I am a life long Michigander and a medical marijuana patient. Under Michigan’s newly found “pro se” law one was deemed under the influence if ANY detectable amount of cannabis was in the blood. This put Michigan med mar patients at risk for vehicular manslaughter convictions even if the patient was not under the influence at the time of the accident.

    Michigan has a very conservative supreme court and a pretty conservative on pot issues (but it’s changing!) population. This surprising decision by the court is a vote for common sense and a barometer of just how much things are changing.

  4. It’s nice to read this. With the severity of DUI’s today, it’s important that the mere trace of THC doesn’t land you in jail. THC stays active in the body for far too long to not protect medical marijuana patients that actually need to use cannabis for health reasons.

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