Police Will Face Charges After Consuming Medibles During Raid
At least three Santa Ana Police officers allegedly did partake of medibles during a dispensary raid at Sky High Holistic. After failed attempts from the Santa Ana Police Department to hide a surveillance video, an Orange County Judge ruled that the video can and will be used. The video shows at least three cops eating cannabis edibles in the shop without doctor’s recommendations and needlessly taunting patients that were present.
The Santa Ana Police Officers Association recently filed a restraining order to block the video from being used against them. August 19, Superior Court Ronald Bauer rejected the restraining order citing “no objectively reasonable expectation” for excluding the video. “[The officers] should not expect privacy in their on-duty performance of an official function at a marijuana dispensary,” Bauer ruled. “They have made no claim that their work required secrecy or that it would be impeded by public view.” The ruling will cause irreparable harm to the reputations of the officers involved.
Matthew Pappas, the dispensary’s attorney, says the ruling is a major breakthrough for their lawsuit. Pappas told Huff Post “This ruling shows that the court had the courage to say ‘no’ to a very powerful police officer union and stand up for the rights of people when bad things like this happen.” Pappas was the one responsible who leaked the footage to the media in the first place. Pappas noted the police force disabling what they thought were all the cameras.
The SAPD claims the use of the hidden camera is a violation of their privacy. “Without the illegal recordings, there would have been no internal investigation of any officer,” SAPD attorney Cory Glave told the OC Register. Santa Ana Police Union president John Franks declined to comment when contacted by the OC Register. No word yet on why the recordings are being called illegal.“They can’t hide behind these types of laws to prevent themselves from being held accountable for their behavior,” Pappas added.
Pappas alleges that other undisclosed dispensaries in Santa Ana paid the Santa Ana Police Department $25,000 to guarantee they wouldn’t be bothered. Pappas also fingered Santa Ana mayor Miguel Pulido of accepting bribes. Pulido told the LA Times “Let me just state on the record, the allegations are unequivocally and categorically false… To allege there was some influence of the lottery and therefore it’s unfair is absolutely false.
Sky High Holistic’s multi-million dollar lawsuit reads “Prior to the November 2014 election, a person hired by the city to support the Measure BB campaign solicited $25,000.00 payments from various people affiliated with existing medical marijuana collectives in or around the City of Santa Ana and promised successful inclusion in the Lottery and assistance finding a collective location if the $25,000.00 was provided to support Measure BB.” Sky High Holistics is currently trying to retrieve the property seized in the raid. Will Sky High Holistic be the last dispensary in Santa Ana to be unfairly raided?