Thursday, February 9, 2012

After a Long String of Legal Persecution, Guy Casey Calls it Quits for Dispensaries

The Seattle Weekly profiles a medical marijuana dispensary co-owner walking away from his business because of constant harassment by law enforcement.

 The woes of Guy Casey, former co-owner of Tacoma's North End Club 420, began with a raid by WestNet, a federally funded anti-drug task force.

WestNet's tactics have been criticized as heavy handed — in Casey's case, the cops handcuffed his 14 year old son and confiscated the cash from his 9 year old daughter's Mickey Mouse purse, then seized 10 pounds of marijuana for his dispensary. Distribution charges were ultimately dropped, but the pot was not returned to the dispensary.

North End Club 420 was later raided by federal agents. Ultimately, Casey said, "I don't need any felonies." However, Casey plans on opening a collective garden, a legal co-op that allows 10 members to grow their marijuana together.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Medical Marijuana Owners Gaze into a Pro-Pot Future

Medical marijuana dispensary owners opined about life after legalization in a recent article in the West Seattle Herald.

 Despite the move toward wholesale legalization with Initiative 502, John Davis, owner of the Northwest Patient Resource Center, speculated that marijuana shops and medical marijuana dispensaries will remain separate businesses because medical use and recreational use are not compatible.

 The owner of Herban Legends, Chris Cody, also hoped the two businesses would be regulated separately, because he feels patients should not have to pay the proposed 25 percent tax that will be levied on non-medical pot.

 There's also confusion as to how marijuana would work as a Schedule 2 drug (which the DEA deems as having medical applications) instead of a Schedule 1 (which the DEA feels has no medicinal value). Both agree distributing through pharmacies will be the sticky point, with Davis pointing out that existing pharmacies do not have knowledge of different strains and that dispensaries may have to become licensed pharmacies. Cody added that there is no infrastructure in place for national pharmacy chains to properly dispense medical pot.