McALESTER — On her way to Tulsa to speak in favor of legalizing medical marijuana, an activist from Colorado ended up making a detour instead — to the county jail.
Regina Nelson, 54, was arrested Sunday during a traffic stop after an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper found baggies and containers of “a green leafy substance” in her rented SUV.
“Nelson claims she is a writer who travels the country and advocates for the legalization of marijuana,” the trooper wrote in a court affidavit. “Nelson said she is en route to Tulsa to speak on the issue. … Nelson says she freely shares marijuana with whomever is in need and stated she has a valid medical card from Colorado.”
Nelson and her two passengers are now charged with a felony that is punishable by up to life in prison and a $20,000 fine.
Prosecutors on Tuesday charged her, a business partner and her son in Pittsburg County District Court. They face a felony count of unlawful possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and a misdemeanor count of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. They have pleaded not guilty.
The arrest has upset cannabis supporters, who already are raising money for their legal fees and calling Oklahoma an uptight state. It also comes just months before the vote on the state question on medical marijuana.
Passage of State Question 788 would allow Oklahomans with a state-issued medical license to possess marijuana legally. The vote is June 26.
Nelson is complaining the