Self-proclaimed weedman and activist Ed Forchion takes on New Jersey about the legalizing marijuana after he was arrested for transporting a pound of weed in his car.
Forchion, who is also known as the NJWeedman, was arrested on April 1 (April Fools Day) after police discovered a pound of California-Kush in his trunk. The discovery came after Forchion was stopped by a state trooper for failing to stop at a red light.
“[I didn’t plan on getting arrested for weed possision],” Forchion stated in an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer. “But now that I’ve been charged, it feels like destiny. That’s exactly what I wanted to do.”
Forchion, who has been distributing and selling medicinal marijuana in Los Angeles, California for two-years and even owns a medical marijuana dispensary, stated that ironically he was visiting his home state to file paperwork against the New Jersey bill that legalized marijuana for medicinal use in AIDS, glaucoma and cancer patients only.
“The state should not be able to have two legal descriptions of the same substance,” Forchion states. “How can the state be allowed to have it both ways arresting some people on criminal laws that state marijuana has no medical value while also allowing others to use marijuana for medical use? Isn’t that a violation of the 14th amendment right to equal protection of the law,” cites Forchion.
Although the arrest is making headlines, this arrest will actually be Forchion’s second bid to bring the issue of jury nullification to the forefront of the judicial system. A practicing Rastafarian, he faced up to 30 years in prison back in 1997 when he was arrested and charged with conspiracy and possession of over 40 pounds of marijuana.
He acted as his own defense counsel then, with a defense of religion, medical and open advocation of jury nullification. The issue of jury nullification so rattled the courts back then that he was offered a plea bargain, which he took, avoiding a possible lengthy jail sentence. To this date, he regrets that decision. Calling the prosecution’s plea offer a bribe, he admits he was lured out of his right to a trial. He envisions this case as another opportunity to bring jury nullification back to the forefront.
Although Forchion does not deny the fact he had one pound of weed in his possession, he is denying the charge that he posses the weed with the intent to sell it.
“A pound of marijuana is like a carton of cigarettes to me. What do they think I was going to do? Sell nickel bags on the corner?” he scoffed. “I’m the Weedman.”