Cancer Patient and Family Found Guilty In Marijuana Trial
A terminal cancer patient who says he grew marijuana to treat his tumors was found guilty of drug charges Wednesday by an Iowa jury that wasn’t allowed to hear his defense. 48 year old Benton Mackenzie was convicted in Iowa district court jury of marijuana manufacturing and conspiracy, along with his wife, Loretta. Their 22 year old son Cody was also found guilty of charges for misdemeanor possession of marijuana and paraphernalia.
The Iowa man who is a terminal cancer patient by the name of Benton Mackenzie showed up to court Tuesday to testify at his trial on felony marijuana charges. Benton Mackenzie had actually been rushed out of Scott County District Court to a hospital on Monday after stating he was experiencing some extreme pain and hallucinations due to the rare cancer he suffers from. However Mackenzie has shockingly been barred from pleading his defense that would attempt to prove the marijuana was to relieve his aggressive and rare disease.
Mackenzie claims he was growing the marijuana to be used to make Canabidiol, or CBD, which is the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis commonly known to treat his tumors. He suffers from severe Angiosarcoma, which is a rare but highly aggressive form of cancer that attacks the blood vessels, typically producing large skin lesions. His family said while in the hospital Monday he was treated for anemia and other symptoms overnight.
He was arrested in 2013, after local authorities seized 71 marijuana plants during a raid of his parents’ home in Long Grove, Iowa. District Judge Henry Latham in May made the decision that barred Mackenzie from using his condition as a defense for growing marijuana.
Mackenzie on Tuesday filed a motion arguing that a law that Iowa Governor Terry Branstad signed in May that legalizes the use of CBD oil to treat epilepsy should protect his use of the oil. Judge Henry Latham however insists that the new law focuses narrowly on treatment for “intractable epilepsy” and does not apply to Mackenzie. Mackenzie even claims he had been threatened under penalty of jail time if he discloses his medical condition during his trial to a jury.
While there is some protection for certain patients, and a strong 81% of the Iowa population supporting medical marijuana, so many other sick Iowans are denied legal access to marijuana extracts. These include people with painful and debilitating conditions like cancer, spinal cord injuries and severe arthritis. Despite it may help treat their conditions, if these people obtain cannabis oil, they will still be considered criminals and can be prosecuted in the state. Mackenzie’s family has stated they will appeal the charges, and fear the he may die if kept in prison without proper continued treatment.
Drunken Horse-back Riding Arrest
Sometimes a plan just does not go the way you want it, and there are some pretty embarrassing consequences. For many people this tends to crop up after a few too many drinks and a Clint Eastwood movie.
According to a police report, one Alabama woman decided to take a shot at the Wild West kind of life-style. 45 year old Christine Saunders was initially only hit with alcohol-related charges after she allegedly got drunk and tried stealing from a local store, but police say several more charges in relation to the incident could be on the way for the culprit.
Local Sheriff Jimmy Harris stated that Saunders had the horse she was believed to have been riding tied up outside the store, and upon searching found a Walmart bag tied to the saddle horn with three cans of Keystone Light.
At this point Christine Saunders has only been charged with public intoxication and possession of a prohibited beverage, but luckily the not-so-trusty steed was returned to the initial owner.
Getting into trouble in a variety of ways is very familiar to people who have trouble with drinking or drug abuse. The worst part is that there is treatment available and these issues can be avoided, while an individual has an opportunity to change their entire life. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135