David Paul Patterson didn't dispute that he was selling marijuana and cannabis oil when police raided his off-the-grid cabin in Walker a year ago.
Rather, he claims that he should be left alone because he was using the more than seven pounds of weed cops seized to heal people, and it's his right as a Rastafarian to do so.
Unfortunately, a jury didn't buy it, spending just a half-hour in deliberations before convicting him.
"The judge read the jury six pages of instructions that basically told them to ignore me, their own common sense, their opinion about the law, and their opinion about what I said, so I was expecting to lose," says Patterson, who plans to appeal.
He claims his cannabis oil has delivered people from their death beds, allowing them to rise up healthy and cancer-free.
"The oil that I make is curing people. It's changing people's lives," he says.
When we reached him yesterday, he rattled off Bible verses to make his case, and expressed disappointment none of the people he healed made it to court to testify on his behalf.
"A lot of the people I give the oil to I don't know, they're friends of friends or relatives of people or whatever, and I didn't really think it was fair to drag them into my fight," he says. "I picked a couple of people who live locally who I thought would make it, but none of them did, but they're all still behind me and their families are too."
His daughter Cassandra says although he lost his initial battle in court, she's still proud of him for fighting the good fight.
"[Cops] keep saying he's in this for the business. He's not. He lives in a wooden shack. He has no water or power, and he wasn't making any money off this," she says. "If he has to be the one that has to go to jail because he's helping people get their medicine, then so be it."
Patterson was convicted of fifth-degree drug possession and fifth-degree drug possession with intent to sell. Both charges come with a maximum of five years in prison, though his lawyer tells him he'll probably spend less than a year locked up. His sentencing is scheduled for March 30.
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