Friday, April 22, 2011

California: No Hope. No Change.

A clemency petition has been sent to President Obama on behalf of Dr. Mollie Fry, who is described as "a physician, breast cancer survivor and medical marijuana patient" as well as the mother of five. She received a 5-year prison sentence, however (as did her husband, Dale Scafer, a "patient and an attorney"). The petition calls on Obama to grant a commutation of sentence, something he has never done in his 822 days as President of the United States (a period of time second only to George W. Bush).

Heather Schafer says her parents "don't deserve to go to prison" and observes that it is "incredible" that President Obama "would spend precious taxpayer dollars to lock up patients despite their compliance with state law." Fry and Schafer were raided by the DEA in 2001, "despite approval from local law enforcement to cultivate medical marijuana." It is also observer that:
Both defendants were denied a medical defense despite being legal patients in compliance with state law and were convicted in 2007. In order to obtain the mandatory minimum 5-year sentence, the government added up multiple years of harvests to arrive at more than 100 plants.
As a presidential candidate, Obama said he was "not going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws on this issue." However as president:
Obama has conducted more than 100 aggressive SWAT-style raids in at least 5 states, resulting in more than 30 new federal prosecutions. President Obama has also continued to vigorously prosecute his predecessor's cases -- like Fry and Schafer -- rather than remanding them to state court where defendants have a chance to defend themselves. 
See story here.

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