The latest blow by law enforcement against medical marijuana comes at the same time Maryland joins the ranks of legal medical pot states. In Idaho, three members of a medical marijuana advocacy organization had their children taken away by Boise police officers who decided that the children were in "imminent danger.”
On Tuesday, Compassionate Idaho activists Lindsey and Josh Rinehart and Sarah Caldwell returned to the Rinehart residence and discovered the Boise police had placed their children (the Rineharts and Ms. Caldwell each have two sons), who were being watched by a babysitter, into protective custody.
According to Lindsey Rinehart, Executive Director of Compassionate Idaho, “They took my children. Due to cannabis being present in the house.”
Ms. Caldwell told reporters the incident stemmed from a schoolyard misunderstanding in which a rumor started that a student brought marijuana or edibles to school and another child consumed it. The rumor got reported to police, who appear to have assumed that the children of the medical marijuana advocates were responsible for bringing the pot to school.
While Ms. Caldwell has regained custody of her two sons, the Rineharts are still fighting to regain custody of their two boys. Authorities told the Rineharts that once their house is deemed "safe" they can get their kids out of foster care – in 30 days.
The search warrant the cops secured to raid the Rinehart home was to investigate pot possession, trafficking, and injury to a child. While there was medicine in the home, Mrs. Rinehart vehemently denies the couple was dealing pot.
“We were not dealing. We were not buying. We were not selling. We were not growing.”
As a result of this incident, Mrs. Rinehart has had to give up the medical marijuana she used to treat her Multiple Sclerosis, and she said her symptoms are already beginning to return.
The fact that no charges have been filed against the Rineharts indicates the lack of evidence in this case. And while it now seems likely that the couple will have their children rightfully returned to them, it is also likely that the children were taken in the first place because their parents were fighting to legalize medical pot in Idaho.
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