BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. — 53-year-old Jeff Kennedy was prepared to spend five years in prison for growing marijuana for medical reasons. But on Friday, Kennedy showed up in court wearing a t-shirt stating, ‘I am a patient not a criminal,’ and it turns out the state agrees. The state dropped the charges at the last minute.
“I’m just going to go forward and advocate for medical cannabis,” said Kennedy.
Kennedy suffers from chronic pain caused by a botched back surgery. His legs burn and twitch constantly. Doctors have prescribed him a cocktail of highly addictive and dangerous pain killers.
“It is slowly killing me,” said Kennedy.
Kennedy says marijuana works better than his prescription meds and do not have the dangerous side affects. Kennedy’s attorney says today’s dismissal proves other patients who use medical marijuana have a proven legal defense to do so.
“Anybody else who may be in similar situations, they know now or can be educated that they do have a defense if they do want to use cannabis,” said Michael Minardi, Kennedy’s lawyer.
Jeff says he will continue to fight until it’s legal to use medical marijuana in the state. Just like it already is in 15 other states and the district of columbia.
“Take this all the way and standup not for my rights and disabled person in the state of florida that can benefit from cannabis.”
But the state’s attorney’s office says not so fast. Attorney Jill Richstone spoke with WPEC and said, “There is no policy that we are accepting a medical marijuana defense. We look at each case individually.”
Richstone went on to say it was decided not to continue on with a trial because Jeff kennedy did not have a grow house to sell marijuana to other people.