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MailTribune.com
  • 'They are not criminals'

    Crowd marches outside jail Friday to protest Thursday's raids on four marijuana dispensaries in Jackson County
  • Public outcry against a series of raids on Jackson County marijuana dispensaries continued Friday as a long line of sign-waving protesters marched around the jail and demanded the release of four people arrested on felony drug charges.
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  • Public outcry against a series of raids on Jackson County marijuana dispensaries continued Friday as a long line of sign-waving protesters marched around the jail and demanded the release of four people arrested on felony drug charges.
    Among them was Brandi Rodriquez, 27, who hefted a sign reading "Give me back my mom and dad; they are not criminals."
    "My mother is very thankful for the community's support," Rodriguez said.
    Rodriguez's parents, Leland and Lori Duckworth, were arrested Thursday at the Southern Oregon NORML, or SONORML, center on West Sixth Street in Medford.
    The Duckworths each were charged with 22 counts of conspiracy to deliver marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school. Lori Duckworth is the executive director of SONORML and a vocal advocate of cannabis.
    The protest began on the steps of Medford City Hall, where cheers of support rang out when Lori Duckworth placed a phone call to her daughter. Members of the crowd gathered around Rodriguez's phone to hear Duckworth's voice.
    "She had a seizure in the jail last night and is not getting her medicine," Rodriguez said.
    The Duckworths remained lodged in the Jackson County Jail on $550,000 bail, an amount Rodriguez calls excessive.
    "You don't see violent criminals with that high of bail," she said.
    Meanwhile, officers with the Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement, or MADGE, team continued Friday to sift through the evidence seized at the four dispensaries and the residences of those who were arrested.
    MADGE Lt. Brett Johnson characterized the dispensaries as storefronts in which illegal marijuana was sold at "black market prices."
    "We are treating this like any other drug case," Johnson said. "There are people being reimbursed for the sale of marijuana and that is against state law."
    Police from several agencies descended on properties in Medford, including SONORML, Puffin' Stuff on Crater Lake Avenue and The Green Compass on East McAndrews Road.
    In addition, officers raided The Compass on Second Avenue in Gold Hill.
    David James Bond, 44, who is affiliated with Puffin' Stuff, was arrested on eight counts of conspiracy to deliver marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school.
    He was lodged in jail on $200,000 bail. Michael Robert Schanno, 40, owner of The Green Compass and The Compass, was charged with four counts of conspiracy to deliver marijuana, four counts of conspiracy to manufacture marijuana, delivery of marijuana and manufacture of marijuana. He was lodged on $550,000 bail.
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