Three marijuana advocates in Boise, Idaho, had their children taken by Child Protective Services this week after police found marijuana in one of the family's homes.
According to an item posted today by one of the parents on Compassionate Idaho, a medical marijuana site, Lindsey Rinehart and her husband Josh Rinehart went hiking with friend Sarah Caldwell earlier this week. When they came back, their kids had been taken.
Officers with the Boise Police Department had arrived at the house while they were gone to conduct a "Well Child Check," allegedly at the behest of a school administrator. (I've requested information from the BPD, and will update this post when I hear back.) "The BPD intimidated our babysitter/friend and gained access to our home," Lindsey Rinehart wrote. "Upon entering, and seeing that the house was Fine, the kids are Fine, they decided to go to my room." That's where police found the marijuana that Rinehart uses to treat her MS, and decided to call Child Protective Services.
CPS took 10-year-old Laustin Rinehart and 5-year-old Elijah Rinehart, as well as Sarah Caldwell's children, 11-year-old Thomas Andrew and 6-year-old Kyle. Their parents are now desperate to get them back. All three are well-known marijuana activists: Lindsey works for Compassionate Idaho, Josh is the director of Idaho NORML, and Sarah Caldwell works for Moms for Marijuana International.
"The crying doesn't stop," Rinehart wrote on her blog. "The heartache doesn't stop. You look around your house and their toys are there, and their/our dogs are here sad with us, their clothes are here. Fuck, CPS didn't even take their Tooth Brushes."
Marijuana activists are rallying behind the families. According to a donation page set up to help cover their legal fees, "there is a dependency hearing for the children that is pending, and possible criminal charges relating to Marijuana might arise in the future."
I've also reached out to Moms for Marijuana International founder Serra Frank, and will update when I hear back.
Update: Russ Belville, a marijuana activist and radio host, interviewed Lindsey Rinehart and Serra Frank on his show. It's heartbreaking: