A medical marijuana patient being prosecuted in Kitsap County Superior Court for drug trafficking was found not guilty on Tuesday morning, after a jury ruled that his use of the drug was within the law.
The jury deliberated for approximately two hours prior to its ruling.
The prosecution alleged that the crop was being sold commercially, and that the Olsons were hiding behind medical marijuana laws as cover for a drug operation.
Defendant Bruce Olson decided to go to trial as the law had changed and he was advised that he had a better chance of acquittal.
The trial was attended by a floating group of medical marijuana activists, from patients to political activists. Several of them noted that it was rare for such cases to go to trial, as defendants usually enter a plea.
These activists filled the courtroom throughout the trial, with no visible support for the prosecution’s position.
Olson, who turns 55 on Wednesday, maintained a subdued manner throughout the trial, and barely talked when he was in the courtroom. This changed on Tuesday, when he was laughing and joking with his attorney prior to the verdict’s reading.
When it was announced Olson blurted “thank you, thank you you guys” to the jury, prompting Superior Court Judge Leila Mills to repeat her admonition to stay quiet until the jury was released.
“As a businessman I am really discouraged at all the money that was spent on this trial . . . It was a waste, and a lot of people who have seen the trial and are in business are wondering why I was prosecuted.” ~Defendant Bruce Olson
My opinion? Great job, jury. The government should not tamper in the affairs of defendants who are licensed to possess marijuana. Period. I welcome the day when marijuana will be legalized. Let’s face it: the “War on Drugs” has failed. Marijuana should not be demonized as a Gateway Drug. Legalize it!