A man who is suffering from multiple sclerosis and is using marijuana for his treatment regimen has been sentenced to five years in state prison, according to an article by Samantha Henry of The Associated Press and posted on R&D Magazine.
John Ray Wilson was sentenced on Friday after being convicted of second degree manufacturing of marijuana and third degree possession of psychedelic mushrooms in December. At the time of his conviction, New Jersey did not have a law that sanctioned the use of marijuana for medical purposes, which was one of the things that State Superior Court Judge Robert Reed reportedly pointed out in his ruling. Outgoing New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine only signed the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act in January this year.
Wilson was arrested in 2008 when a pilot for the National Guard flew over his residence and noticed marijuana plants growing in the yard. State police was then notified and they found a total of 17 marijuana plants behind Wilson’s home, some of which had grown to six feet.
James Wronko, Wilson’s lawyer, said: “We’re disappointed that he’s in state prison for smoking marijuana to treat his multiple sclerosis. I think anytime someone using marijuana for their own medical use goes to state prison, it’s clearly a harsh sentence.” He said further that they intend to appeal the sentence next week.
Advocates for medical marijuana are supporting Wilson and two state senators asked former Gov. Corzine to pardon Wilson. Under the New Jersey medical marijuana law, patients are not allowed to grow marijuana privately; marijuana of up to 2 ounces a month are to be bought from dispensaries monitored by the state.