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St. Lucie County man says he was arrested for possession, despite having medical cannabis ID card

Posted at 6:48 PM, Sep 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-22 19:26:14-04

CORRECTION: Because of a reporting error, this story has been updated to reflect the following: The suspect, David Oliver, was witnessed and videotaped by police handing a small plastic bag containing marijuana to another person. The buyer was stopped and admitted to buying a few grams of marijuana from Oliver.

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ST. LUCIE COUNTY, Fla. According to an arrest affidavit, David Oliver was spotted by St. Lucie County Sheriff's deputies handing a bag to another man from his blue Ford Ranger.

The St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office arrest affidavit clearly indicates detectives arrested Mr. Oliver for the Sale of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Equipment.

Two detectives write that they observed Oliver, in his truck parked outside a convenience store in Port St Lucie, hand a baggie to another man.   Detectives say they videotaped the transfer.

Detectives then conducted a traffic stop and say they saw a clear plastic baggie with a green leafy substance which field tested for marijuana.  They also spotted a digital scale on the floor by the driver seat.

According to the same report, the man who accepted the baggie from Oliver was also stopped.  He gave a post Miranda statement to a detective admitting he bought a few grams of marijuana from Oliver.

Oliver refused to answer any questions in reference to the sale of marijuana.

RELATED: More Medical Marijuana coverage

Oliver is a card-carrying medical marijuana user under the new state system, and has been since April.

“I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder as well as several other anxiety disorders,” he says.

During an August traffic stop, he says he pulled out that card to show to St. Lucie County deputies.

“They interrogated me aggressively as to where I obtained the card, who my doctor was, what my condition was,” Oliver says.

The stop led straight to jail where he was charged with possession and intent to sell.

“This is absurd because I had a very small amount of cannabis - it was 4 grams - and a scale I use to measure my dosage," he says.

His Attorney Michael Minardi is also the legal chair for pro marijuana group NORML.

He says the constitutional amendment passed by more than 70 percent of voters in 2016, included the use of marijuana in flower form -- the type that Oliver possessed during the stop. 

However, legislation to implement the amendment took that off the table.

Law enforcement says that puts David in the wrong but Minardi says not so much.

“That is the legislative law, not the constitutional law,” Minardi says. “And no matter what, the hierarchy of government starts with the Constitution.

Minardi filed a motion this week on behalf of David to dismiss the charges.

His next court date is scheduled for October. 

NewsChannel 5 reached out to the St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office for reaction, but they would not comment on Oliver's arrest.