Monday, February 09, 2015

Free Exercise Challenge To Marijuana Seizure Rejected

In Jenkins v. Micks, (ND CA, Feb. 5, 2014), a California federal magistrate judge dismissed a civil rights action alleging that plaintiff's free exercise rights were infringed when Del Norte, California sheriff's officers seized marijuana allegedly authorized for medical use.  The court said:
Plaintiff provides a discussion of the use of cannabis by different cultures and religions, including the Native American Church. He states that he believes that for him, "Cannabis enhances the truth of the universe," that this plant is a "beneficial and life sustaining herb," and that "by consuming Cannabis [he] is communing with nature."... He also expresses his views regarding the regulation of Cannabis by governmental entities, and some of his political and religious beliefs. No where, however, does Plaintiff allege that he has a central religious belief or practice that is burdened by the criminalization of marijuana. The court finds, therefore, that Plaintiff has failed to state a free exercise of religion claim under the First Amendment.