Medical Marijuana

Terminal Cancer Patient Rushed to Hospital During Felony Trial for Medical Pot (GRAPHIC PHOTO)


A 48-year-old terminal cancer patient was rushed to the hospital from an Iowa courthouse Monday during his trial over felony charges for growing marijuana he uses as a treatment for his rare condition.

Brian Wellner of Iowa's Quad-City Times' first reported that paramedics took Benton Mackenzie, who was expected to take the stand in his trial in Scott County District Court on Monday, from the courtroom to a local hospital after he complained of extreme pain and hallucinations related to his angiosarcoma, a rare and aggressive form of cancer of the blood vessels which has produced large lesions on Mackenzie's skin.



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  1. The pothead is faking it.

  2. Death to all users of the Devil Weed!

    Clearly, the War on Drugs is working!

    Reefer Madness Forever!

  3. One of the tumors looked amazingly like a face in profile: somebody with a big nose, goatee, eye closed, apparently sleeping, bald head, and a collar.

  4. Hey, since it has been distorted beyond recognition anyway, why not argue that prosecuting him is a violation of equal protection?

  5. Why are judges allowed to determine if your defense is acceptable?

  6. Imprisoning dying cancer patients for attempting to treat their symptoms is the price of civilization.

  7. “District Court Judge Henry Latham ruled in May that Mackenzie is barred from using his condition as a defense in court during his trial as a reason for why he was growing marijuana, the Associated Press reported.”

    Perhaps someone with knowledge of Iowa law can enlighten me: Why don’t they allow extremely sick cancer patients to present a defense of necessity to the jury?

    PS – Do these prosecutors feel *proud* of themselves? I mean, do they go home at night with the feeling that their day was well spent?

    1. Necessity looks legit to me.

      Generally, the defendant must affirmatively show (i.e., introduce some evidence) that (a) the harm he sought to avoid outweighs the danger of the prohibited conduct he is charged with; (b) he had no reasonable alternative; (c) he ceased to engage in the prohibited conduct as soon as the danger passed; and (d) he did not himself create the danger he sought to avoid.

      Its hedged around with technicalities, of course. The issue might be “no reasonable alternative”, but that sounds to me like a pure jury question (protip: nearly anything with “reasonable” in it is a jury question).

    2. I’m sure they feel proud. It takes a certain bravery to do something this unpopular & bound to attract flames.

    3. So, in the great libertarian spirit of the proposition that the cure for bad speech is good speech, I propose the following. Prosecutors are allowed to present evidence that has been obtained illegally, and the defense is allowed to argue that their behavior was illegal and that the jury should disregard it. Similarly, the defense should be allowed to offer whatever defense they darn well please and the prosecution is allowed to whine that it’s so unfair and kick over their blocks.

      1. Juries should absolutely see all the evidence they and the parties want, but the verdict should list all the evidence and all the chains of logic from evidence to conclusion, and defects in that chain, including accepting bogus evidence, should be the grounds for appeal.

        There should be no judge because there should be no quibbling among lawyers and judge about what evidence jurors are trusted with; if the jurors aren’t capable of asking intelligent questions, they shouldn’t be jurors.

    4. “Do you solemnly swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth?”

      “No … the judge won’t allow me.”

  8. Please tell me the prosecutor still gets credit for a win. In the end isn’t that what really matters?

    1. I too shudder at the thought of a prosecutor’s win percentage dropping.

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