Charges to be filed against man who allegedly grew medical marijuana

August 29, 2004

Scott Schwebke, Montrose Daily Press

MONTROSE - Charges are slated to be formally filed Thursday in Montrose County Court against a man who was arrested for growing what he describes as medical marijuana.

Montrose County Sheriff's Office personnel arrested 53-year-old Michael Branson, who lives near Pea Green, Aug. 18, on suspicion of marijuana cultivation. He is free from jail on $5,000 bond.

Branson has said he is registered with the state as a caregiver and is allowed to grow pot for a 44-year-old Eckert area woman who has multiple sclerosis and is a registered medical marijuana patient.

Branson was arrested because MCSO personnel found 22 pot plants in a garden on his property, which is 16 more than allowed under the state's medical marijuana statute. Branson has acknowledged growing more plants than allowed by law because he is attempting to become a caregiver for another individual and a registered medical marijuana patient himself.

In order to be listed on the registry, a patient must obtain certification from a licensed Colorado physician that they have been diagnosed with a debilitating condition that may be alleviated by marijuana.

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