U.S. Marine veteran Kristoffer Lewandowski was charged with cultivating marijuana (felony), marijuana paraphernalia and domestic assault in front of children in June 2014 in Geronimo, Oklahoma.
According to the Comanche County Sheriff's office, Kristoffer allegedly chased his wife, Whitney, with a knife. While she went to a neighbors' house with their kids, Kristoffer allegedly barricaded himself in their home, reported KSWO.
Comanche County Sheriff Kenny Stradley stated:
When we get there and we find out we have marijuana there that's being grown, it seems to get worse. And then with children present this is a bad situation gone worse for the whole entire family.
Deputies claim to have found nine marijuana plants and two guns.
Kristoffer's children were reportedly taken away and given to DHS, but later returned to Whitney; this would turn out to be an important detail later.
Truth In Media reports there were six marijuana plants, not nine, which weighed less than an ounce in total, but because of Oklahoma’s marijuana cultivation laws, Kristoffer's felony charge carries a maximum life sentence.
Whitney told Truth In Media that her husband suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), due to three tours of duty overseas, and was using the marijuana for medical reasons.
Whitney claims that she took their children to a neighbor's house because her husband was having a PTSD episode, and the neighbors called the police in hopes of getting Kristoffer some mental health help.
Whitney told Truth In Media that she was a handcuffed by the deputies, put under investigation for marijuana cultivation and was told by deputies that her kids were going to DHS.
Whitney alleges that the deputies told her that she could keep her children and stay out of jail if she pressed charges for domestic violence against Kristoffer, which she did to keep her kids.
Whitney says she later learned that she could not take back the domestic violence charges without being charged with felony marijuana cultivation.
They’re trying to use me as a victim and to make it look worse on his case. My husband has absolutely never laid his hands on me ever. He is not an abusive man, ever … quite the opposite. He is extremely doting.
Whitney came up with her husband's $20,000 bail and the family moved to California where Kristoffer took medical marijuana via prescription for his PTSD.
In June 2015, Kristoffer was arrested by undercover police in a pre-school parking lot in Laguna Beach, California, for missing a court date.
However, Whitney says her husband was in a Veterans Administration psychiatric hospital at the time of the court date.
Kristoffer is being held by authorities in California who are extraditing him to Oklahoma.
Whitney claims that part of the Kristoffer's bail agreement disqualifies Kristoffer from having a public defender, so the family has started a GoFundMe account for his legal defense.
In 2014, ScienceDaily reported: "Clinical research supports a conclusion that smoking cannabis [marijuana] is associated with PTSD symptom reduction in some patients."
"The results of a recent study indicated that patients in the sample reported an average of 75 percent reduction in all three areas of PTSD symptoms while using cannabis, yet further research is still called for by the researchers."