Wednesday, April 14, 2010
A Monterey Superior Court judge granted an injunction against P.G.'s not yet open medical marijuana shop, The Apothecary on Central Avenue on Wednesday April 14.
Proprietor Daniel Maniscalco hung out a shingle, and launched a website, but he says no marijuana had changed hands when the city slapped him with a court order to stop doing business.
"I was really hurt," Maniscalco says, adding that he felt the city's actions were disrespectful, given that he says he was open with city officials about his plans, and never intended to do business until the City Council approved rules governing cannabis clubs in the city.
"I think but for this action he would have been actively selling," responds P.G. City Attorney David Laredo. "The whole purpose of this was to interrupt his plan."
Meanwhile, last month, the City Council instructed staff to draft medical pot rules as soon as possible, despite Laredo's urging that they wait and see whether a California Court of Appeals will allow cities to legally ban medical marijuana clubs.
P.G. also sought a injunction against Maniscalco's landlords, the owners of popular lunch spot Tillie Gort's, which the judge denied. Under such an order, they would have been responsible for ensuring that Maniscalco wasn't doing business in violation of a city-imposed moratorium on medical cannabis.
"I think they're using a sledgehammer to kill a flea," says David Brown, who represents the landlords. Brown pointed to the three attorneys, including Laredo, who represented the city in court, and argued that their hourly rates were likely costing P.G. taxpayers dearly, while also forcing his clients to pay to defend themselves in the case.