Five of SLO County’s “Doobie Dozen” sue the state
January 25, 2013
Five of the 12 medical marijuana collective operators arrested in a controversial December 2010 sweep have filed suit against the California Department of Justice. [New Times]
Valerie and David Hosking, Steven Gordon and Rachel and Chip Tamagni allege that the dissolved state Narcotics Task Force engaged in police misconduct, inflicted undue emotional stress, falsely imprisoned and violated constitutional and legal rights when it arrested the twelve collective operators in their San Luis Obispo County homes on December 28. 2010. The lawsuit also alleges that law enforcement denied the arrested, later dubbed the “Doobie Dozen,” food, water and bathroom use during several days of incarceration.
The San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office dismissed the charges against each of the five now suing the state in January 2011, but then immediately appealed its own dismissals. A state appellate court is yet to rule on the case, and the collective operators have still not received their confiscated property and bank accounts.
The lawsuit names San Luis Obispo police officers Jason Dickel and Amy Chastain, who helped lead the sweep, as defendants in addition to former NTF commander Rodney John. Plaintiffs in the suit include children of the medical marijuana workers who were present during the raid, some of whom were put in protective custody.
The suit describes the behavior of the arresting agents as “willful, wanton, malicious and oppressive. The plaintiffs are seeking an unspecified amount of damages, recovery of attorney fees, compensation for medical expenses and a declaration that law enforcement officers will not conduct “similar unlawful seizures in the future.”
On Tuesday, the district attorney’s office dropped charges against a medical marijuana deliveryman arrested by a sheriff’s deputy earlier this month in Oceano. Judge John Trice ordered that law enforcement return all marijuana and cash they seized from the deliveryman after searching his vehicle during a traffic stop.