Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

After Kenwood drug bust, branch of Oklevueha Native American Church seeks court ruling on pot use


In what could be a test case to create a legal category of “sacramental marijuana,” a Kenwood branch of a church co-founded by a man claiming Native American heritage is suing Sonoma County, contending that the branch’s cannabis was wrongfully seized by deputies because its members are entitled to it for religious purposes, similar to exemptions made for peyote and ayahuasca use by some native groups.

Is marijuana central to the tenets of the Oklevueha Native American Church, or are its members simply looking for a convenient cover to get high and grow lots of pot? The question is at the heart of a federal civil lawsuit, as well as a pending criminal prosecution stemming from a raid last year at the church’s newly established Sonoma County branch, located off a rural road in the Kenwood area.


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