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A Michigan Court of Appeals judge urged lawmakers Wednesday to clarify the state's medical marijuana law, saying the "inartfully drafted" measure has resulted in confusion and arrests.

Judge Peter O'Connell issued his call Wednesday in a 30-page opinion on an Oakland County case in which the court upheld marijuana possession charges against two Madison Heights residents. The judge said the law is so confusing that users "who proceed without due caution" could "lose both their property and their liberty."


The appeals court decision comes as Metro Detroit leaders struggle to interpret the law, which was intended to allow marijuana prescriptions for medical purposes. But O'Connell argued in his separate, concurring opinion that sections of the law contradict Public Health Codes that make possession and manufacture of the drug illegal.

Raids last month on clinics in Ferndale and Waterford Township resulted in arrests and the seizure of marijuana and medical records. A week later, Lapeer County Sheriff's deputies searched a medical marijuana dispensary in Dryden, confiscating marijuana and cash.

"To me, our dilemma is magnified by the events of the last few weeks," said Berkley Mayor Marilyn Stephan, who is faced with the expiration in November of a 180-day municipal moratorium on the medical marijuana law.


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