Photo: Legal Juice
A Wisconsin appeals court threw out a man’s Grand Chute marijuana conviction Tuesday and soundly scolded the city for its bad behavior, even levying a $200 fine against the city’s law firm.
The court made its ruling after deciding that the town’s possession ordinance includes an exception for medical marijuana that is at odds with state law.
In a refreshing turn of events, the Third District Court of Appeals verbally spanked the city for its bad behavior. “We are astonished by the Town’s brazen misrepresentations, which are not supported by record citations,” the Court of Appeals wrote.
The court chided the town’s attorneys, calling them responsible for “grossly misrepresenting the record, omitting record citations, and citing a document not made part of the record.”
“Kettner’s rule violations pale in comparison to the Town’s,” the court ruled.
The court’s decision hinged on the fact that Michael J. Kettner was tried under the state law, not the municipal ordinance he was charged with violating.
The court reversed the 2009 municipal forfeiture judgment against Kettner for possession of marijuana, in part because he has a valid doctor’s recommendation for medical marijuana from a California doctor that wasn’t addressed in his trial, reports Jim Collar of the Appleton Post-Crescent.
The court additionally ruled that the attorney representing Grand Chute incorrectly told Outagamie County Judge Michael Gage that the ordinance incorporates state law that prohibits the possession of marijuana for any use.
The court levied a $200 fine against the law firm of Andrew Rossmeissi, representing Grand Chute, for misrepresenting the case record.
Grand Chute Town Attorney Charles Koehler said the town will ask the court to reconsider its decision.
“We were very surprised by the court’s ruling,” Koehler said.
Kettner was also found guilty of possessing drug paraphernalia. The Court of Appeals upheld that forfeiture.