U.S. Supreme Court may hear NJ Weedman’s appeal of marijuana conviction
NJ Weedman's lawyers are a step closer to arguing his 2010 convictions on marijuana possession before the U.S. Supreme Court.
The nation's top court has listed the petition on its docket as "Distributed for conference" on May 12, which means the court may or may not discuss the petition. If it is not discussed, it is automatically denied.
The 51-page petition challenges the 2010 arrest of marijuana activist Ed Forchion on possession of marijuana in Burlington County. It poses 10 specific questions about the state's marijuana laws. Among the issues raised are whether or not the laws discriminate against blacks and Rastafarians, and whether Forchion's 14th Amendment rights to due process and equal protection were violated.
This is not the only federal case Forchion is pursuing.
His federal lawsuit continues against the city of Trenton, which he says violated his religious freedom by targeting his downtown Trenton restaurant and adjoining sanctuary for enforcement action. The city says NJ Weedman's Joint violates city curfew for certain businesses. Forchion says Liberty Bell Temple, which is contained in the same building, is exempt because it is a religious institution.
Weeks after the lawsuit was filed, Forchion and 10 others were arrested in April during a raid at his Joint. Mercer County Prosecutor Angel Onofri said officials had "received information from multiple sources that Forchion was distributing marijuana from the premises.
Forchion has refuted the allegations as "exaggerated and misconstrued the goings on at the temple."