COHASSET - What a jury didn't do to Mike Rogers, thieves did.

The first Butte County resident acquitted under the state's medical
marijuana law lost most of his crop to "patch pirates" early Friday.

The Cohasset man said he was awakened about 3 a.m. to the sound of
one or more persons in the back yard of his Cohasset Road home.

He pumped the action on his shotgun, apparently frightening off the
thieves, but not before they made off with five of his eight
marijuana plants.

Earlier in the week, Rogers, 44, obtained a court order for the
return of property seized in a 1999 sheriff's raid, including high
intensity lights for growing marijuana indoors.

However, the court has refused to reimburse him for the 21 marijuana
plants and dozens of seeds that were seized as evidence. He also said
he incurred $7,000 in legal fees in the court case.

A jury this summer found Rogers innocent of cultivation and sale of
marijuana in what was portrayed as the first medical marijuana trial
locally.

Rogers was arrested in August 1999 after circulating flyers and
taking out newspaper ads offering to sell several exotic varieties of
marijuana plants to medical marijuana users.

During his trial, Rogers claimed he was trying to start up a
community co-op to help other medicinal marijuana patients obtain
clones (clippings from pot plants) so they could grow their own
marijuana.

Rogers has been using marijuana since 1997 with a doctor's
recommendation for pain stemming from a broken neck suffered in a
college wrestling match when he was 18. He is a founding member of
the Butte Alliance for Medical Marijuana.

He said there have been "several persons up here ripped off by patch
pirates this year."

The Cohasset man said he gave chase Friday, but never got a good look
at the thieves in the dark before they fled in a small pickup.

Sheriff's deputies took a report of the theft, but Rogers said "they
seemed more interested in what plants I had, than what was stolen."

Both he and his fiancee have doctor's recommendations allowing them
to use marijuana for medicinal purposes, according to Rogers.

The couple had already harvested some of their crop. They estimate
they have about a six-month supply, not enough to get them through
the year before they can plant more marijuana.


Newshawk: Sledhead
Pubdate: Sat, 27 Oct 2001
Source: Chico Enterprise-Record (CA)
Copyright: 2001 The Media News Group
Contact: letters@chicoer.com
Website: http://www.chicoer.com/
Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/861
Author: Terry Vau Dell
Bookmark: http://www.mapinc.org/mmjcn.htm (Cannabis - Medicinal - Canada)