Aurora Veteran Fights For Return Of Pot Plants

December 16, 2007

, CBS 4 Denver (CO)

A former Marine from Aurora who argued that marijuana helps him deal with injuries suffered during Operation Desert Storm planned to ask for the return of his plants on Monday.

Criminal charges were dismissed against Kevin Dickes, 38, on Friday in Arapahoe County District Court. Dickes is a state-certified medical marijuana patient, and the district attorney dismissed marijuana cultivation charges against him following his not guilty plea.

Dickes was wounded by shrapnel from a grenade in 1991.

"It helps with my nervousness, it helps with the pain, with my mood swings," Dickes told CBS4. "When I'm in pain, I kind of get upset, angry; it calms me down and it's better than narcotics."

Police seized 71 plants from Dickes' home on April 27. A neighbor told police Dickes was growing the marijuana in his house, but Dickes' attorney, Robert Corry Jr., says police were not told the pot was for pain and the DA said officers didn't know he has a medical card allowing it.

Corry said state law requires the police to maintain the quality of whatever they confiscate.

"The police officers must maintain it, must cultivate it, they must water it, feed it, preserve it," he said.

Dickes was set to file a motion for the marijuana plants' return and said that if the plants are dead, he'll be asking for hundreds of thousands of dollars ($2,500 per plant).

In a similar case in Fort Collins earlier this month, police returned 39 plants seized from another couple with a medical marijuana card. Those plants were dead and now the couple is suing the police department.

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