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Court date for pot advocate set
Local marijuana activist facing drug charges in Supreme Court

Miranda Scotland
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, May 8, 2013

A trial date for a case against a local marijuana advocate has finally been set four years after the charges were brought before the court.

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Marijuana advocate Kim MacNearney gives a big cheer on April 20 at the Somba K'e Civic Plaza after marching to support the legalization of marijuana. MacNearney is expected in court Dec. 2 on possession and production charges. - Miranda Scotland/NNSL photo

Kim MacNearney and Craig MacNearney are each facing one count of possession for the purpose of trafficking and another for production of a controlled substance.

Police arrested the couple after finding 20 marijuana plants and a "large amount" of cultivated pot at a Northland Trailer Park home in February 2009.

Since then Kim has become the face of a Northern movement to legalize marijuana. For the past two years on April 20 - popularly known in cannabis culture as 4/20 - MacNearney has taken to the streets with a sign reading "marijuana is a plant not a poison." She has also started advocating on a national scale at the request of the NORML Women's Alliance.

However, residents have questioned MacNearney about her intentions with some suggesting her protests were held to gain sympathy for her case.

"I certainly understand that there are skeptics and doubters and there always will be," said MacNearney. "But those who know me know that I'm very true in my intent and that I really just want to help people and help people avoid the same situation that I went through."

The circumstances surrounding the charges were very traumatizing for her and her family, MacNearney said, adding it took some time to heal before she realized her "path in life again."

Shortly after being charged, MacNearney, who suffers from chronic back pain, applied for a medical marijuana licence and received it in 2010. The licence has given her the freedom to speak out, she said.

"Whether my charges are in court or not, this is the way my life has gone and I am a cannabis advocate now regardless of where the charges are," said MacNearney. "When our day is done in court I'll still be doing the same thing I'm doing now."

MacNearney would not speak specifically to the charges because the matter is still before the courts. The couple's date in NWT Supreme Court is set for Dec. 2 at 10 a.m. The jury trial is expected to last for about 10 days.

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