On Wednesday, October 24, a dozen armed, masked NTF agents stormed Next Generation, a legal medical marijuana collective located on San Ysidro Blvd. in San Diego.
The raid came just hours after the Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District reversed Jovan Jackson’s conviction. In that case, Jackson was operating a collective in San Diego which was raided by the same NTF team. Following a year-long trial, Jackson was acquitted by a jury of his peers. Refusing to accept the jury’s decision, San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis’ office raided Jackson’s collective a second time and re-filed all the charges.
This time Dumanis managed to get the case in front of Judge Shore, a vocal opponent of medical marijuana, who promptly denied Jackson a defense in state court. Without a defense or the ability to rely on state law allowing for collectives and cooperatives, the second jury convicted Jackson.
The decision to deny Jackson a defense drew outrage from the community and the attorneys in the case. Americans for Safe Access, the nations leading medical marijuana advocacy group, picked the case up on appeal and has spearheaded the effort to reverse the conviction since.
Less than two weeks after oral arguments were heard on Wednesday, shortly before the raid on Next Generation was executed, a unanimous decision was published by the court. The court of appeals reversed Jackson’s conviction and affirmed the legality of dispensaries. The narrow definition espoused by Dumanis’ office that all patients must somehow be part of growing the actual plant for the dispensary to be legal under state law, was completely thrown out.
The raid on Next Generation was clearly a retaliatory attack against the community.
Without warning at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, masked gunmen rushed in with guns drawn, threw patients on the floor, confiscated medicine, the collective’s money, medical records, and anything else they could find of value. Not a single person was arrested during the raid, clearly proving the force used was excessive and unnecessary.
Minutes after the raid started, the San Diego ASA raid response team was on the scene with a bullhorn, protest signs, and a camera.
Video: DEA Raid on Medical Marijuana Dispensary – Next Generation
Reprinted with permission from San Diego Chapter of Americans for Safe Access’ Press Room.