Nord not deterred by court decision


HAYDEN -- The Supreme Court decision Monday ruling against medical marijuana probably won't have an effect on Hayden resident Don Nord.

Nord's marijuana plants were seized by Grand Routt and Moffat Narcotics En--forcement Team authorities in 2003, despite the fact that Nord has a permit to use the drug for medicinal purposes and was not charged with a crime.

Monday's ruling says federal drug laws trump the medical marijuana laws on the books in 10 states, including Colorado.

Nord is currently in a court battle with the officers who seized his marijuana to have the plants returned to him. The case is in Denver District Court, where no action has been taken for more than a year.

Nord's lawyer, Kristopher Hammond, said the Supreme Court ruling won't have any legal effect on the case, but it could speed the process.

Hammond thinks District Court Judge Walker Miller knew about the Supreme Court case and wanted to wait for the outcome before issuing his ruling.

Miller's office could not comment about whether the Supreme Court's decision meant a decision in Nord's case was forthcoming.

"I don't think the justices did right," Nord said Tuesday. "Do any of (the justices) have medical problems, do they know what marijuana does for a person?"

Nord regularly smokes homegrown cannabis to ease the pain of his many ailments. The 58-year-old has had kidney cancer, prostate cancer, testicular cancer, diabetes and chronic pain.

The court's decision means Nord could be prosecuted for violating federal drug laws, but he doesn't intend to stop using his "medicine."

"We're not criminals, we're not out there to do anybody any harm," Nord said. "If it helps us, why take it away from us?"

Whether Monday's decision means a crackdown on medicinal marijuana users is unclear. Members of GRAMNET did not return phone calls Tuesday, but state and federal officials said Monday arresting medicinal users was not a priority.

Hammond said he hopes the high court's decision won't mean arrests for marijuana users like Nord.

"I hope the federal government has better things to do with taxpayer money than take medicine away from sick people," Hammond said.

Brandon Johansson can be reached at 824-7031 or

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