Drug Crimes

In The News

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Medical Marijuana Club Owner Will Continue to Face Criminal Charges

By Michael Nichols
Categories: Michael J. Nichols, Drug Crimes

An Ingham-County-Judge-refused-to-dismiss-criminal-charges against the owner of a medical-marijuana club in the Lansing-area, leaving the case pending in the new year. Right before he ended his term due to retirement, Ingham County Circuit Judge James Giddings denied a motion to dismiss charges against Frederick Dagit. the 61-year-old Dagit operated "The Green Leaf Smokers Club," a medical marijuana club near Williamston.  Giddings wrote in his December 30th 2010 opinion that the activities of Dagit "appear to have gone well beyond acting for himself."  Lansing-criminal-law-attorney and expert Mike Nichols said "Michigan's Medical Marijuana Act will continue to generate opinions regarding the application of the law to different factual circumstances and Judge Giddings' opinion gives a little more direction about when the protection of the law will not apply, at least in Ingham County."

The issue was whether or not medical marijuana patients and their caregivers could combine the amount of marijuana that they possessed for purposes of staying within the legal limit of enough of the drug to ensure uninterrupted supply. The attorney who pursued the motion for Mr. Dagit could not be reached for comment on Monday. However, Mike Nichols stated "as an attorney who specializes in complex criminal cases, especially those involving operating while allegedly impaired by alcohol or drugs, my concern is the fact that constitutional protections are not applied in the same way when dealing with people accused of driving while impaired.  This case did not involve an allegation of driving, but I continue to see drivers scrutinized heavily by law enforcement on suspicion of operating while impaired -- especially by drugs with the protections of the medical marijuana act."

Voters approved overwhelmingly a 'referendum" in 2008 that required legislators to enact the medical marijuana act.  The act gives the protection of the law to those who need to use it to treat certain conditions or specific types of pain. The act has been heavily critized by many law enforcement circles and prosecutors. Nichols added "it seems as if they are now targeting drivers for operating while intoxicated by drugs if it is not blatent during a stop that a person smells of alcohol."

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Peer Recognition

Mike Nichols is a national leader in drunk driving defense. He is a member of the Forensic Committee and Michigan delegate to the National College for DUI Defense. He is also a Sustaining Member of the College. Nichols is also a founding member of the Michigan Association of OWI Attorneys; a member of the American Chemical Society; an associate member of he American Academy of Forensic Science, Adjunct Professor of Forensic Evidence in Criminal Law and OWI Law and Practice at Cooley Law School. He is also author of the West OWI Practice book and several chapters in other books on science and the law.

Mike Nichols is recognized by his peers in Michigan as a “SuperLawyer” in DUI/Criminal Defense. Nichols has also been asked to speak at conferences by groups such as the NCDD; Various Bar Associations in other states.