People v Green – Left To People v McQueen

The Michigan Supreme Court issued an Order in June 2013 reversing the Michigan Court of Appeals in People v Green, and explained that the trial court should follow the Court’s opinion as explained in People v McQueen. For those who do not know about People v Green, the matter involved a transfer from an MMMA patient to another MMMA patient. Therefore, the question or issue in People v Green was very similar to the question in People v McQueen.

Therefore, as explained in McQueen and ordered to be applied in People v Green, marihuana can only be transferred between caregiver and patient in order to qualify for Section 4 Immunity. The Court in McQueen also went as far to explain that a patient and a patient can transfer marihuana between one another but only when that transfer is for the benefit of medical use as applied to both patients. Wait what?

In essence, both patients involved in a transfer between one another must benefit from the medical use of marihuana while involved in the transfer. The Court in McQueen even went as far to explain that the transfer could be for the sale of marihuana; however, it went on to reiterate that the transfer must be for the benefit of medical use of marihuana as applied to both patients involved in the tranfer. Or the transfer involves the registerd caregiver and attached qualified patient.

This is an interesting topic to comprehend and identify, but there is a silver lining to all of what has occurred between the two cases. That silver lining is that the MMMA does allow for transfers under certain circumstances. It must also be noted that the issue discussed about, and involved in Green and McQueen, above deals with Section 4 – Immunity. If there is a finding that Immunity in a particular case is not substantiated by the facts of that particular case then the individual defendant may still have the opporunity to argue for a Section 8 – Affirmative Defense. It will be interesting to see the outcome of People v Green as it goes back to the trial court.

It is imperative to know the law, maintain your rights, and lawyer-up with a criminal defense attorney. Do not represent yourself, but instead obtain compentent and knowledgable counsel to assist you. Josh Jones specializes in Marihuana Defense and is here for you and your case. Call 734-355-0424 or 810-691-7308 today for your free consultation. He has your back!

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

Concealed Pistol Licenses & Michigan Pistol Free Zones

Michigan Pistol Free Zones should be known and you should always be aware of them when carrying your concealed weapon. Having a Concealed Pistol License (CPL) allows for an individual to carry a conceal weapon on his or her person while in public; however, there are certain areas that an individual, even with his or her license, are not allowed to carry (i.e. Michigan Pistol Free Zones).

Michigan Pistol Free Zones limit those areas pursuant to MCL 28.4250. Those that hold a CPL are not allowed to carry a pistol in the following areas or establishments:

  • School property, except a parent or legal guardian who is picking up or dropping off a child and the pistol is kept in the parent’s or legal guardian’s car.
  • Public or private child care center or day care center, child caring instution or child placing agency.
  • Establishments serving liquor, yet the primary source of income stems from the sale of liquor; however, owners and employees are exempt.
  • Dormitories or classrooms within a college or university; however, Michigan State University, University of Michigan, and Wayne State University all have special status in the Michigan Constitution and elect their Board of Regents. This means that the state preemption law does not apply to those universities, which allows for each of them to pass their ordinances to ban the carrying of firearms anywhere on their respective campuses.
  • An entertainment facility with a seating capacity of 2,500 or more individuals that the individual knows or should know has a seating capacity of 2,500 or more individuals or that has a sign above each public entrance stating in letters not less than 1-inch high a seating capacity of 2,500 or more individuals.
  • Sports arena or stadium.
  • Churches, synagogues, mosques, temples, or other places of worship, unless authorized by the presiding official.
  • Hospitals

These Michigan Pistol Free Zones do not apply to all individuals, and thus some individuals are “Exempt From” Michigan Pistol Free Zones and allowed to carry a pistol in those areas. See MCL 28.4250. A box will be checked on the individual’s CPL license.

For those who violate these limitations of their CPL and Michigan Pistol Free Zones will be subject to the following, per MCL 28.4250, sanctions:

  • First Offense – State civil infraction and have the CPL suspended for 6-months.
  • Second Offense – A misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000.00, and have their CPL revoked.
  • Third Offense – A 4-year felony and a fine of not more than $5,000.00 or both, and the CPL will be revoked.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. LAWYER-UP WITH JOSH JONES

Guilty Plea Consequences – What Are They?

If you plead guilty or no contest, you give up your right to claim that it was not your choice to plead and/or that there were any promises, threats, or inducements to plead other than what is stated on the record in open court. Meaning you are waiving your right to be found guitly by members of your peers within a trial.

For example, a common guilty plea consequence can involve a controlled substance offense, certain alcohol-related offenses or traffic-related offenses can bring about a suspension or revocation of your  Michigan driver’s license. Other guilty plea consequences can result in the loss or restriction of a professional license; of the ability to obtain/retain certain licenses, permits, or employment; of eligibility for public/military service and/or benefits; of eligibility for public funds, including welfare benefits and student loans/grants/tax credits; of eligibility for public housing; of the right to vote; and of eligibility for jury duty.

Furthermore, Federal and/or state law may prohibit you from possessing or purchasing ammunition or a firearm (including a rifle, pistol, or revolver) if you are convicted of a felony or if you are convicted of a crime of violence and you are a current or former spouse, parent, or guardian of the victim; you share a child in common with the victim; you are or were cohabiting with the victim as a spouse, parent, or guardian; or you are or were involved with the victim in another similar relationship. In the end, guitly plea consequences are numerous and sometimes not thought of, but remember they can have a long lasting impact.

There may always be collateral consequences, or guilty plea consequences, not included within the general advice of rights. You are encouraged to conduct an independent search or consultation relating to the possible guilty plea consequences noted above and other possible and additional consequences related to your case. Always discuss guilty plea consequences with your attorney and, if necessary, with the court before the entry or rejection of any plea.

Guilty Plea Consequences – Specific Criminal Topic & Pleas

Immigration Issues

If you are not a legal citizen of the United States or were born in another country, your plea of guilty or no contest can result in deportation or otherwise affect your ability to remain in the United States. Regardless of whether deportation is applicable in your case, a conviction may affect your ability to enter into another country, including Canada.

Assaultive Crimes

Under MCL 770.9a, a defendant convicted by plea, verdict, or judgment of an assaultive crime shall be detained and shall not be admitted to bail unless the trial court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant is not likely to pose a danger to other persons. Under MCL 770.9b, a defendant convicted of sexual assault of a minor (under age 16) shall be detained and shall not be admitted to bail.

Firearms & Crimes

Under MCL 750.239, violations of MCL 750.222 et seq. require forfeiture of the firearm or weapon. Michigan law also includes several distinct forfeiture acts relating to specific types of offenses including, but not limited to, controlled substances, firearms, gambling, motor vehicles, public employees, and a generic forfeiture act, MCL 600.4701 et seq.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

Common Drug Crime Defenses: Some You Know And Some You May Not

There are times when controlled substances and/or drugs crimes are accepted within society these days. Those accepted moments comes when those around the individuals are okay with the use and/or partaking iof the drug question. Moreover, another common time where individuals are allowed to use a controlled substance is when he or she has a valid license or proper authorization to use said drug. These are the most common drug crime defenses within Michigan, especially now because of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (aka MMA). The MMMA is an ideal drug crime defense for those found with or using marihuana.

Of course, the individual’s conduct must be in compliance with the his or her license or prescription in order to avoid prosecution. For example, an individual could still be charged with driving under the influence if he or she is over the limit or maxed out on a painkiller or some other drug that he or she has a valid prescription for, yet drug crime defense could still be applicable depending upon the individual’s case.

In order to be convicted of a drug crime an individual must actually possess the substance in question, and thus another drug crime defense becomes apparent. Possessing something can consist of two variation of “possession.” This is known as actual and constructive possession. Constructive possession is the idea that the individual charged has the ability to possess or control the substance. The idea and legal term can even bring about a conviction for an individual who is not the true owner, but still has the ability to possess and does possess it. Remember, if the individual has authority to possess the substance he or she will simply have to prove that fact to avoid prosecution, unless the act is performed outside the limitations set by statute.

Other possible drug crime defenses are substantively and factually based. Meaning, for example, if the police officers involved in a suspected criminal investigation and searched an individual’s car in violation of his or her Constitutional rights then something can be done, i.e. a drug crime defense used. The fruit of that violation will bring about a poison for the prosecutor’s case-in-chief because of what will happen to his evidentiary support involving that particular case. This poison would bring about suppression of any and all evidence obtained after the point of the illegal search of the individual vehicle.

In the end, when controlled substance charges are involved in your case you need to make sure you hire an attorney who understands the importance of how this affects you and who knows those common drug crime defenses that could assist you and your criminal matter. Did you know that drug convictions can and will bring about drivers license sanctions? These types of crimes are when you need someone to lean on. Lean on Josh Jones, he is here for you and always has your back.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

MICHIGAN DRIVERS LICENSE SANCTIONS

Suspensions:

Definition: The privilege to drive is suspended for some definitive period of time (generally one year or less), and they typically restored after suspension period without the necessity of a DAAD hearing. However, depending on the charge and the individual’s driving record and criminal history

Most Common Drivers License Sanctions by Offenses:

  • OWI First Offense; OWI High BAC
  • Possession of Controlled Substances, including marihuana
  • Point Accumulation
  • Routine/Temporary Medical Issues

Revocations:

Definition: The Privilege to drive is revoked and denied, and thus the license privilege is not restored unless or until DAAD restores the privilege. The license is restored usually after a significant waiting period and a hearing on the matter to determine if you will again be provided with the privilege to obtain a license. No privileges are allowed during a revocation, and courts have little—if any—ability to intervene to override a revocation.

Most Common Offenses Resulting in Revocation:

  • OWI Second or Subsequent Offense
  • OWI Injury/Death
  • Serious Medical Issues

Typical Waiting Periods for Michigan Drivers License Sanctions:

  • 1 Year for two OWI offenses within 7 years or OWI Injury/Death
  • 5 Years for three OWI offenses within 10 years (assuming there was a prior revocation)

Most Common Ways to Lose Michigan Drivers License:

  • OWI
  • OWI Causing Serious Bodily Injury/Death
  • OWI Repeat Offenses
  • OWI High BAC (“Super Drunk” allegations)
  • OWI Refusals (Implied Consent Violations)
  • OWI-PD (Operating While Intoxicated w/Presence of Drugs)

Miscellaneous Criminal Offenses with Michigan Drivers License Sanctions:

  • Possession of Controlled Substances
  • Automobile Theft/Joyriding
  • Reckless Driving
  • Point Accumulation
  • Medical Issues
  • Accidents Resulting in Fatalities
  • Probationary Drivers with Points
  • Flee/Elude Police
  • Felony Vehicle Advisory (MCL 257.319)

Whenever you are involved with a criminal charge here in the State of Michigan, contact Josh Jones. He is here for you. It is important an essential to understand the consequences of criminal convictions. As you see above not all of the charges are driving related, which makes it imperative to contact a criminal defense lawyer for any and all criminal matters.

PLEASE DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. WE HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON. 

Remember, Josh Jones handles matters in Metro-Detroit (Oakland, Wayne & Macomb Counties), Genesee County, Livingston County, Lapeer County, and Washtenaw County. Contact him today!

What is Michigan Larceny?

Michigan larceny can loosely be defined as the taking of something (property) from another. The State of Michigan makes this particular area of law somewhat complex because of the various acts and property that can be involved in a Michigan larceny. Furthermore, there are numerous variations of punishment based upon the circumstances of an individual’s case and the property involved.

First and foremost, “[a] person who commits [Michigan] larceny by stealing any of the following [pieces of] property of another person is guilty of a crime,” see MCL 750.356, which includes:

(a) Money, goods, or chattels.

(b) A bank note, bank bill, bond, promissory note, due bill, bill of exchange or other bill, draft, order, or certificate.

(c) A book of accounts for or concerning money or goods due, to become due, or to be delivered.

(d) A deed or writing containing a conveyance of land or other valuable contract in force.

(e) A receipt, release, or defeasance.

(f) A writ, process, or public record.

(g) Nonferrous metal.

Once the property falls within one of the above categories, an individual charged with Michigan larceny can face, if convicted, one of the following punishments, see MCL 750.356:

  1. [A] person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years or a fine of not more than $15,000.00 or 3 times the value of the property stolen, whichever is greater, or both imprisonment and a fine . . . [if t]he property stolen has a value of $20,000.00 or more.
  2. [A] person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00 or 3 times the value of the property stolen, whichever is greater, or both imprisonment and a fine . . . [if t]he property stolen has a value of $1,000.00 or more but less than $20,000.00.
  3. [A] person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 1 year or a fine of not more than $2,000.00 or 3 times the value of the property stolen, whichever is greater, or both imprisonment and a fine . . . [if t]he property stolen has a value of $200.00 or more but less than $1,000.00.
  4. If the property stolen has a value of less than $200.00, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 93 days or a fine of not more than $500.00 or 3 times the value of the property stolen, whichever is greater, or both imprisonment and a fine.

Moreover, if an individual is convicted of a second or subsequent Michigan larceny charge than he or she will face an even hasher punishment than noted above. This enhancement in jail and fines is common in Michigan, and does not include the crime of Michigan larceny. The more crimes you commit the higher the jail exposure. Whenever you are faced with a Michigan larceny charge or other criminal charge contact Josh Jones today. He maintains a full-service criminal defense firm for you, and he always has your back.

PLEASE DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

OWI While Car Not Running – Can You Be Charged?

An interesting and substantive question that arises when a police arrive to the scene of a suspected drunk driving, yet the officer discovers that the individual may have not actually been driving the vehicle. Instead, the vehicle is parked, the engine is turned off, and the car is not in motion. In such cases, the courts have held that circumstantial evidence of operating the vehicle may be sufficient and used to support a drunk driving even though it’s an OWI while car not running.

An example of circumstantial evidence of operating a vehicle (or OWI while car not running) may include a situation where an officer arrives on the scene of an accident and observes several cars, not involved in the accident, pulled over in an apparent effort to provide assistance. If the officer, by questioning witnesses, gathers enough evidence to establish probable cause, he or she could arrest a person for an OWI misdemeanor (or OWI while car not running).

Questions such as “When did you stop?” “How long has it been since you drove your car here?” or “Have you had anything to drink since stopping here?” might be enough circumstantial evidence to justify the arrest. Furthermore, the smell of liquor or beer, staggering movement, empty liquor or beer bottle, or other evidence can contribute to whether an individual can be convicted of an OWI while car not running.

Another example of OWI while car not running can be found in People v Schinella, 160 Mich App 213, 407 NW2d 621 (1987). The defendant was found in the early morning at the wheel of his car, which was off the road, straddling a ditch. The engine was not running, but the hood and back tires were warm, and freshly broken tree branches had been placed under the wheels, apparently to provide extra traction. These facts sufficiently established that the person behind the wheel had been operating the vehicle.

One of the first questions an attorney should be asking is “how did the officer arrest the client for a misdemeanor that he or she did not see?”

The long-standing “misdemeanor arrest” statute was amended effective August 21, 2000, to provide for warrantless arrests for 93-day misdemeanors, including drunk driving offenses. If the officer has reasonable cause to believe that an individual operated the vehicle while intoxicated, regardless of the officer’s personal observation and regardless of the need for evidence of an accident, then he or she may arrest that suspect.

PLEASE DO NOT RELY upon any of the information contained in this article when trying to represent or defend yourself in a court of law. You should always consult with an attorney before relying upon any written advice, article, blog, or otherwise displayed on this website or any other website on the internet.

Decriminalizing Marijuana In Michigan

Here in the State of Michigan, there are certain cities decriminalizing marijuana involving up to a specific amount of marijuana and for of-aged individuals (those over 18-years old or 21-years old). It is important to note that individual municipalities may and will have varying languages and requirements within those individual ordinances.

These cities decriminalizing marijuana include, but may not be limited to, Ann Arbor, Flint, Detroit, Lansing, Ferndale, Jackson, Grand Rapids, Ypsilanti, and Kalamazoo. The cities of Oak Park and Hazel Park recently past oridnances allowing for decriminalizing marijuana, and in November 2014 it is been said that Utica, Lapeer, Port Huron, Onaway, Harrison Township, East Lansing, Clare, Saginaw, Frankfurt, Mount Pleasant, and Berkley will be voting for decriminalizing marijuana.

What does decriminalizing marijuana mean for those individual’s found to be using, possessing, and delivering marijuana within those areas? That answer is not as clean or straight forward as one may seem.

First off, everyone must remember that you can still be charged at the state level for possessing, using, or delivering marijuana. What does that mean you may ask? Depending on the arresting department, the State Prosecutor can have jurisdiction to prosecute the matter, and thus not be constrained by local ordinance law. In the end, whether you are criminally charged or cited for a civil infraction for marijuana will depend on the arresting agency.

The second thing concerns the type of citation you recieve for marijuana within areas decriminalizing marijuana. In these areas criminal charges will not ensue, if the arresting agency is the local police deparment. Generally, areas decriminalizing marijuana will simply issue a civil infraction . . . i.e. pay a fine and you are done. But remember, whether it is a civil infraction or a criminal charges is based upon the arresting officer or agency.

You must know the law in order to maintain your right in any situation, and at the end of the day you need to lawyer-up with someone that has your back. Josh Jones is here 7-days a week. He maintains a full-service criminal defense firm specializing in marijuana defense.

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

Josh Jones is ready to represent you in Metro-Detroit (Oakland, Wayne & Macomb Counties), Washtenaw County, Livingston County, Lapeer County, and Genesee County.

Medical Marijuana Drunk Driving In Michigan – When Does It occurs?

It may be considered a landmark case for the Michigan Medical Marihuana community. The Michigan Supreme Court, in People v Koon, has held that individuals who qualify for immunity will not automatically be found to be driving “under the influence” simply because they internally possess medical marihuana, and thus limiting the power of marijuana drunk driving charges issues by prosecutors throughout Michigan.

The Court distinguished the Michigan Motor Vehicle Code, MCL 257.625(8), from the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (aka MMMA), which allows for the use of medical marihuana. Moreover, the Court pointed out that the Act does forbid an individual from operating a motor vehicle under the influence of marihuana, i.e. marijuana drunk driving. MCL 333.26427(b). However, as the Court pointed out, the Act does not define what it means by “under the influence,” and thus the interpretation of what is “marijuana drunk driving” becomes debatable.

The Court concluded that the Motor Vehicle Code was not applicable to the Koon case. The reason for this is because the MMMA specifically states that any and all other statutes within the State of Michigan that are inconsistent with the MMMA will not apply to such individuals. However, in order to obtain such protection an individual must first qualify for the presumption of Immunity under Section 4 of the Act. It is important to note that the individuals must be engaged in the medical use of marihuana in order to qualify for this interpretation and not be seen as under the influence of marijuana.

In the end, an individual qualifying for immunity under Section 4 will be allowed to internally possess medical marihuana and operate a motor vehicle. Yet that still begs the question of what qualifies as “under the influence” of marihuana (or marijuana drunk driving) as defined in Section 7 of the Act?

To answer this question the case turns on other factors that occurred during and/or before the traffic stop, i.e. proving that you are visibly impaired, under the influence, or intoxicated by marijuana. They must actually prove marijuana drunk driving rather than simply showing that it is within an individual’s system.

This means that swerving, weaving, rolling stops, speeding, and the like will all come into play when an officer is attempting to establish reasonable suspicion and probable cause that you are under the influence of marihuana or visibly impaired. More over, the factors just listed, do not include the care smelling like burnt marihuana, an individual’s eye’s being red, a roach sitting in the ashtray, or the like, which will also increase the risk and probable cause that you are driving while under the influence.

Remember, know the law, know your rights, and lawyer-up with Josh Jones. He has your back and is here for all your marijuana criminal issues (medical and non-medical).

DO NOT RELY ON THESE LEGAL OPINIONS AND OBSERVATIONS WHEN REPRESENTING YOURSELF IN COURT. THESE ARTICLES ARE NOT MEANT TO COMPENSATE OR EFFECUATE LEGAL REPRESENTATION. YOU SHOULD AND MUST CONTACT AN ATTORNEY AND DISCUSS WITH HIM OR HER THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY AND ALL IDEAS, STATEMENTS, OPINIONS, EXPRESSIONS OR OTHERWISE STATED ON THIS SITE. HOPE TO SPEAK WITH YOU SOON.

MEDICAL MARIHUANA COLLECTIVE GROWING – People v Bylsma Michigan Supreme Court Opinion

Many people will make People v Bylsma out to be bigger than it is, meaning that this case has negatively impacted the medical marijuana community here in Michigan. However, the case was not without hope and should be read thoroughly prior to rendering judgment.

The Michigan Supreme Court (MSC) analyzed Bylsma very narrowly, at least in regards to its application to the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act (MMMA). Moreover, the Court only used this narrow analysis for part of its opinion. When the Court looked at Section 4 of the MMMA it determined that Bylsma did not hold immunity for his acts that brought him before the court. The Court held that Bylsma was not without recourse. That recourse is found in Section 8 of the MMMA.

So what was the issue? Bylsma was charged with manufacturing marijuana because he had maintained a warehouse that contained not only his medical marijuana plants (which he was legally allowed to grow), but it also contained plants from other patients. He was not connected to those individuals through the State registry system. These patients were renting space inside the warehouse, and Bylsma was the owner and operator of the warehouse. The other plants, which were not technically owned by Bylsma, were still found to be in possession of Bylsma. i.e. Bylsma was maintaining a medical marihuana collective grow operation.

The Court was concerned, when looking at whether Bylsma possessed the over abundant amount of plants, whether there was a sufficient nexus between him and the contraband, which factors in whether he maintained dominion and control over the contraband. In the end, Bylsma did just this, and thus cannot be afforded immunity in the eyes of Section 4 of the MMMA. However, Bylsma had preserved the right to bring forth the Section 8 affirmative defense.

Because he had preserved this defense he is still allowed to raise it during or before trial, which has yet to occur with his case. The Court affirmed the fact that Bylsma does not have immunity, yet the Court also reversed in part and remanded the case back to the trial court. The trial court was told, by the MSC, that it should look to its opinion and analysis set forth in People v Kolanek, which outlines the analysis of a Section 8 affirmative defense.

At the end of the day, this was not a setback, but instead a clearing of mess that had been created and a reaffirmation of a cornerstone case—Kolanek. Some issues remain, but as time goes on those whom were weary of that fog will see that you still have rights, responsibilities, and avenues of recourse to puff away. It is time for you to be the one creating the fog, but instead of a mess you create tranquility.

PLEASE DO NOT RELY upon any of the information contained in this article when trying to represent yourself. You should always consult with an attorney before relying upon any written advice, article, blog etc.