Doctor who recommended medical pot gets restraining order vs. Ashcroft
A federal judge awarded a West Slope doctor who recommends medical marijuana a temporary restraining order against Attorney General John Ashcroft.
Mollie Fry, whose clinic in Cool was raided by federal agents three years ago, will appear in a San Francisco court next week to hear whether a judge will make the order permanent.
“I feel beaten and I’m asking him to stop beating me,” Fry said.
The temporary restraining order, approved by U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup, elated Fry.
“We need to continue to struggle against those who would take our freedom away,” she said. “I mean, hello, what more freedom do you have than to choose?”
Soon after Fry’s restraining order was approved, Charles Miller, a spokesman for Ashcroft’s office, said he was waiting to see it.
“I’m not familiar with it as yet,” Miller said. “There’s all kinds of things out there that have been filed against the government.”
During the July 8 hearing, Laurence Lichter, Fry’s San Francisco-based attorney, will attempt to give proof that the federal government is harassing his client.
Alsup is the judge who in September 2000 banned the federal government from prosecuting doctors who recommend medical marijuana to chronic patients.
He also ruled federal agents can’t revoke a doctor’s license to practice medicine – and investigators can’t begin a case on a physician – just because they recommend medical marijuana.
Lichter said Fry’s order could expand Alsup’s 2000 ruling.
“It’s the first time that any doctor has had any evidence that the government violated the federal injunction,” he said.
In September 2001, agents raided the clinic Fry and her husband, attorney Dale Schafer, operates. Medical records for about 400 South Shore residents were seized, as well as items in a storage shed the couple rented.
Some files were returned.
Fry’s Drug Enforcement Administration certificate has been pulled, which means she can’t prescribe drugs like Vicodin. She still can recommend medical marijuana.
The doctor plans to bring her contingency to San Francisco next week, including some media.
“I’m not punching. I’m treading water,” she said. “All I want to do is protect the innocent.”
– E-mail William Ferchland at email@example.com