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77-Year-Old Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Jail for Growing Marijuana

After a long five-year legal battle, a 77-year-old man from Missouri was sentenced to 10 years in prison for growing marijuana. But the controversy surrounding the case remains.

In 2012, two police officers were investigating an identity theft case in Missouri. A woman's credit cards were being improperly sent to an address near Springfield, but the officers couldn't find the house. So they went to the next closest address, which belonged to then 71-year-old Charles Frederick White. The officers said when they approached the house, they detected a "skunk-like smell" that they determined to be marijuana. The police later obtained a search warrant and seized more than 1,700 marijuana plants.

But the case isn't nearly as simple as that. White and his attorneys claim that he had been the target of an investigation since 2010 when he was spotted leaving a hydroponics store. They also said that White's property contains a fence with a no trespassing sign and that the officers illegally stepped onto his property as part of the identity theft investigation.

Despite his lawyers fighting the case for nearly five years, White eventually lost and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. According to media reports, he now needs the assistance of a cane in order to walk and is losing his eyesight. To be fair, White had been arrested for growing marijuana two times before the 2012 incident. Still, the judge who sentenced White said, "This is not a sentence I feel particularly good about." 

If even the judge who's sentencing you for a crime implies that it's not a fair punishment, then you know the law is messed up.


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