Michigan v. Hartwick

870 N.W.2d 37, 498 Mich. 192 (2015)

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Michigan v. Hartwick

Michigan Supreme Court
870 N.W.2d 37, 498 Mich. 192 (2015)

  • Written by Patrick Speice, JD

Facts

Richard Hartwick (defendant) was charged with several marijuana offenses after police found dozens of marijuana plants in Hartwick’s home. Hartwick moved to dismiss the charges under two provisions in Michigan’s medical-marijuana law. First, the law immunized registered qualifying patients who use marijuana for a medical purpose and registered primary caregivers from prosecution for possessing 2.5 ounces of marijuana or less and up to 12 locked-up marijuana plants. Second, the law established an affirmative defense for patients and primary caregivers who possessed a reasonable amount of marijuana to continuously treat a patient when a physician comprehensively assessed the patient and advised that the patient would likely benefit from using medical marijuana to treat a serious or debilitating condition. At an evidentiary hearing, Hartwick proved he was a registered qualifying patient and primary caregiver to other registered medical-marijuana users. However, Hartwick could not identify the others’ physicians or medical conditions. The trial court denied Hartwick’s motion, the appellate court affirmed, and Hartwick appealed. The Michigan Supreme Court considered Hartwick’s appeal along with that of another similarly situated defendant.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Zahra, J.)

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