A prosecutor in Utah plans to file misdemeanor drug charges against Donna Weinholtz, wife of Democratic candidate for governor Mike Weinholtz, following an investigation that uncovered nearly 2 pounds of cannabis at the couple’s home, the Associated Press reports. Mike Weinholtz said that his wife uses cannabis to treat pain caused by degenerative spinal conditions and arthritis and that he was unaware of the stash.
The investigation was sparked when U.S. Postal Service inspectors discovered a package containing a small amount of marijuana that Donna Weinholtz attempted to mail to another home owned by the couple in California. Federal investigators were called in and searched the couple’s Utah home, finding the larger supply — but the U.S. attorney’s office declined to file federal charges, instead sending the case to Salt Lake County prosecutors.
Citing a potential conflict of interest due to the candidate’s political ties to Salt Lake County District Attorney Sam Gill, the case was moved to Tooele County prosecutors who indicated they would levy charges.
If convicted, Donna Weinholtz could spend six months in jail and face a $1,000 fine.
“She refuses to use addictive opiates, and used cannabis after suffering when other medicinal options were either invasive, ineffective or addictive,” Weinholtz said in the report. “We have complied at every step of the judicial process and now that we know where the case is landing, we look forward to having the issue resolved and moving on.”
Tooele County Chief Deputy Attorney Gary Searle said he was not sure if Mrs. Weinholtz holds a medical marijuana card in California, but he has “no intent to turn this into some political sideshow.”
However, even if she is registered under California’s medical marijuana program, cannabis possession is still illegal in Utah — whose own program is very limited, allowing only for individuals with severe epilepsy to use CBD oil.
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