Visalia Medical Marijuana Center is Boycotting Ban

Visalia, Calif. Two years ago, aids patient Teresa Douthit's 5-foot-8 frame got down to a scary 113-pounds … and because of the side effects from her HIV medication, she deals with constant kidney and liver problems.

Teresa Douthit said, "I can't take aspirin and vicodin some of the pain medications that you normally would take. I can take some of the stronger ones but I don't want to be all looped up on oxycontin."

Douthit smokes medicinal marijuana to ease her pain and regain her appetite. She says this lets her lead a normal life and she's upset the county has decided to shut down all medical marijuana distributors in its jurisdiction until the state and federal governments agree on the issue.

"I personally don't want to be out on the street trying to buy it illegally," said Douthit.

By Sunday, most medical marijuana distributors in the county's jurisdiction were shut down because of the county's new ordinance passed last month. But a defiant Jeff Nunes is keeping his doors open, even though doing so could lead to criminal charges. The owner of Visalia Compassionate care says he has more than 400 chronically ill patients who need medical marijuana.

Nunes said, "If there's interruption of medical treatment with these patients I mean this is affecting the day to day life of thousands of people in our community and it's because of a decision without any medical evaluators."

The sheriff's office says it's in no hurry to arrest dispensary owners, but it also won't let them stay open forever.

Sgt. Chris Douglass said, "That's a possibility since it isn't compliant with all the federal laws so that is a possibility but we hope it doesn't have to come to that."

The Sheriff's office will be checking on the medical marijuana distributors over the next few weeks to make sure they are shut down.

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