On Tuesday of this week, a resident of Bluffton, South Carolina, was charged with drug trafficking after 137 pot plants were found in his backyard. The resident, a 66-year-old man named Frank Dennis Peters, turned himself in to the authorities.
Peters claims he has been growing the marijuana to assist his wife of 40 years who suffers from fibromyalgia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The drugs increase her appetite and help her sleep according to Peters. His wife has been ill for some time and needs help every couple hours for her treatments. Peters added, "I have a moral obligation to make my wife as comfortable as possible."
The neighbors had not reported the plants, though he has been growing them for some time. He believes that a guest at his neighbor’s most recent party must have notified the authorities.
Peters welcomed the police into his home voluntarily and made some coffee while they confiscated his plants. As his wife’s sole caregiver, Peters was given some time to make arrangements for her before he turned himself in to the local authorities. He was released on Tuesday from the Beaufort County Detention Center on his own recognizance.
Under current law, medical marijuana is legal, but only if it is purchased from South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control. However, the Department has never actually distributed any marijuana according to department spokesman. The law is 33 years old.
Peters does not match the description of a typical drug trafficker, though his case is hardly rare. Earlier today, a jury in Loveland, Colorado convicted two doctors for writing an illegitimate medical-marijuana license. The doctors were 63 and 73 years old.