City's stance on medical marijuana threatens right to safety, suit says

By John O'Brien | May 21, 2010


SANTA ANA, Calif. (Legal Newsline) - An epileptic blind woman also stricken with cerebral palsy is suing the city of Dana Point, Calif., over its attempt to close the collective where she receives medical marijuana.

Malinda Traudt's lawsuit is the first medical marijuana suit that alleges the city has unconstitutionally interfered with the rights to life and safety, her attorney Jeff Schwartz said. Traudt is 29 years old and has spent her entire life in a wheelchair.

"When a dispensary challenges a ban, the city simply has to show that the ban serves a legitimate purpose, such as reducing crime, loitering, or traffic. Cities always win that battle," Schwartz said.

"However, when a city interferes with a person's fundamental, constitutional rights, it must prove that the ban serves a compelling public interest and is narrowly-tailored to avoid interfering with other civil rights. And, the city almost always loses."

Traudt was recently diagnosed with osteoporosis and was diagnosed marijuana to manage the pain. This was done after other pain medications did not work and Traudt's kidneys shut down.

Dana Point is trying to close the Beach Cities Collective and other collectives in the city. Traudt's suit hopes to torpedo that effort.

From Legal Newsline: Reach John O'Brien by e-mail at jobrienwv@gmail.com.

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