Emeryville patient James Blair had his medicine and his cultivation equipment seized by Emeryville Police Department in December 2003. Police confiscated Blair's 30 full-grown plants, yet his criminal case resulted in a dismissal of all charges. On 4/20/04, an Alameda Superior Court judge issued a court order for the return of Blair's property. After being denied his property by Emeryville PD, Blair, with ASA's help, threatened contempt of court. Emeryville PD eventually capitulated and agreed to return some of Blair's property. However, due to an alleged burglary of an evidence locker, Emeryville's Police Chief was compelled to write Blair a letter in June 2004 that many of his items were "no longer in our possession." The "stolen" items included most of Blair's cultivation equipment and most of his medical marijuana.
ASA is representing Blair in filing a civil suit against the City of Emeryville and Emeryville Police Department for damages resulting from his wrongful search and seizure. ASA is using the Bane Civil Rights Act to seek triple damages for Blair and attorneys fees for the organization.
On April 11, 2006, the City of Emeryville settled, and agreed to pay $15,000 to Blair for seizing his medical marijuana and cultivation equipment. Emeryvlle now enforces a policy of not confiscating medical marijuana from qualified patients who show a valid ID card or doctor's recommendation.
- Blair's civil suit complaint seeking damages for unlawful search and seizure (filed 12/9/04)
- Blair's opposition to demurrer by City of Emeryville (filed 4/11/05)