Medical marijuana dispensary owner's prison sentence raises questions over prosecution

A metro Detroit man who was a pioneer in the medical marijuana business is behind bars, serving more than 5 years, in...

Posted: Mar 29, 2018 1:14 AM
Updated: Mar 29, 2018 1:14 AM

A metro Detroit man who was a pioneer in the medical marijuana business is behind bars, serving more than 5 years, in a case that has some asking if he was the victim of selective prosecution, or if his time behind bars is an appropriate punishment for criminal activity.

His family, his attorney and his peers all believe he's being singled out for what others are still getting away with right now.

Rudi Gammo was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison. Supporters say that's longer than some child molesters, who have gotten out in 3 years or less.

"My husband is everything for us, everything. He is the head of the family and he support us on everything no matter what it is," his wife Vida says. "My kids probably going to be 10 years old when he come home. I just want a little bit of mercy. because my kids and me and my whole family needs him, need him back."

Vida says Rudi got into the medical marijuana business years ago, working at the job as if it were his duty, using his Green Cross on 8 Mile to help those who were hurting.

Despite everything, the family says they don't regret the decision.

The Cannabis Legal Group and their principal attorney Barton Morris have stepped up to help.

"Rudi is one of the first people to be provided a medical marijuana dispensary in the city of Detroit, that was permitted by the city," Morris says. "It's my goal to see to it that he is released from prison, and his justice has been restored."

Here's how Morris breaks down the case: "Here's the thing they were prosecuting him as a continual criminal enterprise. right. because Rudi has all these homes. Allowing people to grow marijuana in buildings that he owned to service the community. All the marijuana is being grown and being sold at the dispensary. He's doing nothing different than what all these other dispensaries are doing."

Morris says that's how most medical marijuana business is done in metro Detroit - at least for now.

"For the last several years medical marijuana dispensaries in the state of Michigan in the city of Detroit but all over the state have been getting their marijuana from overages from caregivers," Morris says. "So, they're being distributed to dispensaries all over the state. so that's what Rudi was doing so he was just one of the few individuals that was prosecuted for it and eventually jailed for it."

So, is this a case of selective prosecution or the perfect punishment for the crime?

"Up until now, there has been no uniformity, there's been some people prosecuted it and others not. And people like Rudi Gammo, individuals that are really trying to provide a service that our society wants and needs," Morris says. "Our society has said marijuana should be legal, so we should not be jailing people for it, especially non-violent offenders, that are trying to do within the parameters of this gray area, that we're in the process of right now. These individuals shouldn't be penalized especially when the laws are going to change."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 697182

Reported Deaths: 8169
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1427711862
Ramsey59431953
Dakota53075503
Anoka48987486
Washington31228315
Stearns25428242
St. Louis20900339
Scott20039146
Wright18954165
Olmsted16269112
Sherburne13840106
Carver1237052
Clay936897
Rice9278125
Blue Earth888747
Crow Wing8070102
Kandiyohi753292
Chisago733858
Otter Tail689897
Benton6653102
Mower576238
Winona564852
Goodhue560581
Douglas549484
Beltrami534672
Itasca532572
Steele520221
McLeod519665
Isanti500470
Morrison478263
Nobles455650
Becker455060
Polk444575
Freeborn438142
Lyon402454
Carlton399160
Nicollet387848
Pine384026
Mille Lacs363860
Brown358244
Cass355536
Le Sueur348230
Todd333034
Meeker314049
Waseca297626
Martin271633
Wabasha25005
Dodge24865
Hubbard241941
Roseau238224
Houston211217
Redwood206642
Fillmore204510
Renville204248
Pennington196022
Wadena192927
Faribault184925
Sibley180310
Cottonwood179424
Chippewa173439
Kanabec168329
Aitkin159239
Watonwan157211
Rock142919
Jackson136112
Pope13378
Yellow Medicine128720
Pipestone126126
Koochiching125119
Swift120319
Murray117610
Stevens110011
Clearwater109218
Marshall107619
Lake94321
Wilkin91014
Lac qui Parle89424
Mahnomen7339
Big Stone7024
Grant6938
Norman6829
Lincoln6724
Kittson54222
Unassigned52893
Red Lake5067
Traverse4375
Lake of the Woods4204
Cook2150

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 443535

Reported Deaths: 6420
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk69441683
Linn26618363
Scott23312265
Black Hawk19397338
Woodbury17483233
Johnson1698692
Dubuque14775221
Pottawattamie13369186
Dallas13048102
Story1211448
Warren707893
Webster6479103
Cerro Gordo6370105
Clinton635898
Des Moines618084
Muscatine5985109
Marshall586981
Sioux547676
Jasper532076
Lee529084
Wapello5230128
Unassigned50150
Buena Vista479442
Marion464086
Plymouth442185
Henry351341
Jones341159
Bremer331365
Washington330454
Crawford326844
Carroll326553
Benton325756
Boone318636
Mahaska282754
Dickinson276547
Kossuth257471
Clay255629
Jackson253844
Tama246073
Hardin244547
Buchanan244238
Delaware240143
Cedar228025
Fayette227945
Page225724
Wright221741
Winneshiek219237
Hamilton216752
Harrison205476
Madison199920
Clayton199758
Floyd195742
Butler191936
Poweshiek188837
Mills188225
Iowa185927
Cherokee184740
Allamakee181152
Jefferson178238
Lyon178041
Calhoun172213
Hancock170336
Winnebago170131
Cass164356
Louisa161651
Grundy161335
Appanoose158149
Shelby156539
Emmet153241
Franklin152224
Humboldt151626
Union149937
Sac147922
Mitchell146143
Guthrie142132
Chickasaw141618
Palo Alto134527
Clarke130226
Montgomery127940
Keokuk121332
Monroe118733
Howard118422
Ida109838
Davis105025
Greene103012
Pocahontas102623
Monona99034
Lucas98523
Adair97734
Worth9558
Osceola84717
Decatur76710
Fremont76511
Van Buren75221
Taylor73412
Wayne66323
Ringgold63027
Audubon60114
Adams4254
Rochester
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 49°
Feels Like: 83°
Mason City
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 83°
Albert Lea
Partly Cloudy
84° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 83°
Austin
Partly Cloudy
84° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 83°
Charles City
Partly Cloudy
84° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 82°
Warmup ahead of workweek
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Full Weather Forecast 9/25/21

${item.thumbnail.title}

White House responds to CDC COVID booster shot recommendations

Image

White House Responds

${item.thumbnail.title}

One-on-one with "Long Island Medium" ahead of Rochester appearance

Image

Ribbon cut on new playground equipment at two Mason CIty schools

Image

New Playgrounds In Mason City

Image

Coulee Bank offers free shredding event

Image

Free Shredding Day

Image

Med City Mover offers people a sneak peek of new transportation

Image

Med City Mover

Community Events