California Medical Marijuana Patient, Mother, Facing Jail, Custody Loss

The story of medical marijuana patient Daisy Bram and her battle with local authorities is heartbreaking.
handinhand.jpg
Our Los Angeles marijuana lawyers wish we could say it’s isolated. We wish we could at least say that it was an ordeal she only had to endure once.

Sadly, it’s been an ongoing nightmare for the young mother from Tehama County.

Back in September of 2011, the young woman was heard on tapes wailing as county child welfare officials removed her two young children – including a one-month old who was still breastfeeding – from the home she shared with her partner. She cried over and over again for her babies, pleading with authorities and asking how the youngest would eat.

They did not answer her. Instead, they placed the two young children in foster care – for six months.

The reason? Bram is a medical marijuana patient and her partner is a cultivator. The pair had 38 medical marijuana plants in a garden in the back yard. Both were charged with felony marijuana possession, possession of marijuana with intent to sell, child endangerment and child abuse. The latter two charges were based on the fact that marijuana was in a home where young children were present and that Bram was breastfeeding her child while also consuming medical marijuana.

Not only were the children taken from her and placed in foster care, they were reportedly medicated against her will. Eventually, the two parents moved to another county, regained custody of their two children and had another.

Now, they are reliving this terrible experience. The two were again arrested in January on the same charges. This time, all three children – including a 3-month-old – have been placed in foster care. The raid in this case came the day before a court hearing was scheduled for the disposal of the earlier case. In addition to taking her children, authorities also reportedly seized her 12-year-old vehicle – the only car she owns – claiming it was purchased with illicit funds from the sale of marijuana. They took it from the court parking lot when she arrived to family court for a hearing on the children.

The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws is advocating for the dismissal of the case, as well as the return of her children back to her care. NORML sent a letter to the family law judge overseeing the case, underscoring that that there is no scientific evidence that marijuana usage by a breastfeeding mother exposes an infant to danger. Further, the group said that marijuana growth in or around a home is actually safer than a number of other household plants – and exponentially safer than tobacco use.

What’s more, the mother claims that while in foster care, the children are not being properly bathed and clothed. They have shown evidence of bruising and scratching. One has a chipped tooth, the other a black eye. She told local media she is desperate to get her children back. And yet, the state is actually mulling plans to place them up for permanent adoption.

Again, this is a woman who is a medical marijuana patient and has a legal right under state law to consume marijuana for medicinal purposes.

She has stopped using the drug, although she remains in chronic pain, and she has separated from the children’s father – all in a desperate effort to get her children back.

Cases like this should never happen. Yet despite promises from federal authorities as high up as Obama not to pursue criminal charges against medical marijuana patients in states where consumption is legal with a prescription, it continues to happen.

We’re here to help.

The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 714-937-2050.

Additional Resources:
CA Medical Marijuana Patient Daisy Bram Arraigned on Cultivation Charges, Feb. 21, 2013, By Thomas H. Clarke, The Daily Chronic
More Blog Entries:
Medical Marijuana for Soldier With PTSD Could Land Him In Jail, March 7, 2013, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog