Medical Marijuana

Restraining Order Bid Against L.A. Medical Pot Shutdown Fails in Court


The latest discouraging news on the L.A. pot wars front, from the L.A. Times:

Four dispensaries failed Wednesday to win a court order to stop Los Angeles from shutting them down when the city's medical marijuana ordinance takes effect June 7…

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge David P. Yaffe denied the motions for temporary restraining orders, rejecting arguments from David Welch, the attorney for the dispensaries, that the operators could suffer irreparable harm from daily fines and arrest.

"The temporary restraining order is denied, again, and for the last time," Yaffe said.

The judge set a hearing on an injunction for June 18, dismissing concerns from Welch and the city's attorneys that the issue should be decided before June 7.

And yes, it totally does matter what judge you end up in front of in the American system of justice:

The dispensaries nearly won their restraining orders earlier in the day from Judge James C. Chalfant, who has criticized the city's handling of dispensaries and insisted it would be wrong to prosecute the operators before their motion for an injunction was heard. "We can't have these people go to jail," he said.

But Chalfant could not schedule a timely hearing and transferred the cases to Yaffe.

The dispensaries are among 44 that filed two lawsuits challenging the ordinance, which allows only facilities that registered by Nov. 13, 2007, to continue to operate….

More lawsuits are a-coming:

The city also faces nine lawsuits filed this week by attorney Stewart Richlin, who intends to seek court orders to halt enforcement of the ordinance….

Eric Shevin, another attorney, plans to file a lawsuit soon on behalf of medical marijuana patients and also pursue an order that would bar the city from enforcing the ordinance.

My Reason Online article earlier this month on the foolishness of the city's attempts to enforce the ordinance, and my Reason magazine May cover story on the tortuous history of L.A.'s attempts to regulate the non-problem of medical pot storefronts.

NEXT: Going "Green"

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  1. I guess we will soon move on to the regulatory takings lawsuits. Most zoning ordinances avoid being takings by grandfathering existing uses. Not this one.

    Getcher popcorn ready!

    1. Actually, the dispensaries being closed down were opened after L.A. instituted a moratorium. The dispensaries opened prior to the moratorium are grandfathered in. This deals specifically with the dispensaries that opened after the deadline in hopes of being allowed to stay open once everything was sorted out. They gambled and lost.

      That being said, I sure hope the Legalization Initiative passes this Fall, but with the slowed, delayed, blocked implementation of the Dispensary Initiative, I don’t hold out much hope of Law Enforcement backing off even if the Legalization Initiative passes.

      1. That moratorium has not been legally binding since last August. What this means or should mean for ones that opened WHILE it was in effect is a different matter, one that will probably need to be decided in court, but that moratorium was overthrown by a local judge.…..16047.html

  2. The reformist campaign is to get pot regulated, isn’t it?

    You got it. STFU.

  3. I have it on good authority that this doesn’t happen, what with California being a Blue State and all.

    ? is a poster after my own heart on this one.

    How bout we try this method next time:

    Tax us, regulate us, set us free!

  4. We can headline pretty much any article at Reason that includes anything to do with California as “California is Fucked: Chapter (whatever)”.

    This whole state is simply baffling to me. They can’t seem to find a hole that they won’t stop digging.

  5. It’s a shame that not all the dispensaries in LA didn’t get what they deserve like these four did. Dispensaries are like candy stores selling poison to our kids. Their owners should be given the death penalty for murdering children.

    1. I have a solution. Since dispensaries are like candy stores selling poison to our kids, the City should open poison stores that dispense children to big Candy.

      With that going on, people will assume that they are already stoned, thus killing the demand for Pot.

      1. I don’t really understand your plan, but if it kills the demand for Marijuana I support it.

    2. if u actually believe what you are saying Juanita, then u are really a dumb person who doesnt understand anything

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