Dying Cancer Patient Found Guilty Of Growing Marijuana - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Dying Cancer Patient Found Guilty Of Growing Marijuana

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 ELDRIDGE, IA – Growing marijuana in Iowa is illegal, but Benton Mackenzie says it’s the only way for him to fight his terminal cancer. He says chemotherapy kills cancer cells, but also kills good cells. Plus, it’s expensive. He says getting medical marijuana treatments is also overpriced.

Mackenzie was diagnosed with Angiosarcoma in 2011, a disease that attacks blood cells and causes painful tumors. He says cannabis oil actually cures his cancer.

“It was golf-ball size by the time I started treating it, and it had disappeared. It was just a little pink spot within 2 months.” With that success, he continued to grow the marijuana. That was until May 2013 when police seized 71 plants from their family home in Eldridge. He says this number is only enough to help himself.

Since police seized his marijuana, Mackenzie says his tumors have grown back rapidly and worse.

“I need at least one plant a day for fresh juice,” says Mackenzie, “I’m not growing for other people. I’m not doing it for fun either. I need it. It would be insane for me to give my medicine to somebody else.”

Yesterday, the Scott County jury found Mackenzie guilty on four felony drug charges. This isn’t the first time he has been in trouble with the law. In 2000 and 2011, he was also convicted for possession with intent to distribute.

Now, his wife, son and parents are also facing charges. Dorothy Mackenzie and her husband are charged for allowing marijuana to grow on their property. Dorothy says it came to the point of life or death for her son. She decided it was worth it to break the law.

That’s the big question here – Is doing something illegal worth the quality of life? Mackenzie says yes, but knows he won’t live through punishment if he goes to prison without cannabis oil.

“If they give me more than a month in prison, it may as well be 2,000 years. Doesn’t matter to me. I’m a dead man,” says Mackenzie.

While this story was about Benton Mackenzie and his cancer, he hopes that he can spread the word and help other too. “This is about life. People have a chance at life. People have a chance at relief.”


---Original Story---

An Iowa man who says he grew marijuana to treat his cancer has been found guilty of drug charges.

A Scott County jury returned the verdict on Wednesday, July 9, 2014 for 48-year-old Benton Mackenzie.

The charges were in connection to dozens of marijuana plants found at Mackenzie's home last year.

His wife and adult son were also found guilty of drug charges.
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