Jury convicts man in medical marijuana case

November 14, 2005

, North County Times

What is believed to be North County's first medical marijuana-related trial ended Monday with a man being convicted of possession of marijuana for sale, marijuana cultivation and possession of more than 28.5 grams of the drug.

A Superior Court jury found that Dean Childers had more marijuana plants in a rented Fallbrook home than allowed under California's voter-approved Compassionate Use Act.

Childers faces about three years in prison when he is sentenced on Dec. 14.

After the verdict, Judge Harry Elias told the jury that "this is the first trial that I'm aware of ---- at least in North County ---- on the issue of medicinal marijuana."

The judge instructed the jury that the law limits possession for medicinal purposes to six mature or 12 immature plants. Childers possessed 80 plants, half of them mature, prosecutor Richard Madruga said. Childers' attorney, James Dicks, told jurors that his client needed the drug to relieve pain from a back injury suffered at work.

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