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Modesto Syringe Exchange Defendants back in court

Monday, August 02, 2010
8:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Event Type:
Court Date
Stanislaus County Courthouse 800 11th Street
Location Details:

Two volunteers facing charges for their involvement with an Airport District syringe exchange program were back in court on May 17. Judge Ricardo Cordova ruled on several points, including the addition of tourniquets, sterile cookers , sterile water, and cotton balls to the DAs definition of "paraphernalia". These items will be allowed to be considered as drug paraphernalia when the defendants face a jury presumably sometime later this year.

The most disheartening ruling came in regards to the use of a medical necessity defense. Judge Cordova heard from both sides of the table regarding the 6 stipulations necessary for the defense team to fulfill. There was lengthy discussion around "emergency" and the "imminent need" of syringe access programs. In the end, he found item 3 regarding "legal alternatives" problematic and ruled against the defendants. A medical necessity defense will not be allowed.

He stated that legal alternatives for the defendant's actions in fact do exist : 1) doing the work necessary to get local leaders to authorize, or 2) to vote those leaders out. He also added that the actions of the defendants were politically motivated. This is very frustrating for obvious reasons. Most frustrating - while the "legal alternatives" as stated by the judge continue on as they have for several years, users are still spreading disease, people are still dying, people are still addicted, and money is still being shoved down the drain.

And the insult? Simply stated, any alleged actions by the defendants were absolutely NOT politically motivated. This is about public health, common sense economics, and human life. YES, HUMAN LIFE. Ill-informed members of the community have made this political and public health, community health, family health is suffering.

Please join Off the Streets in supporting these public health workers and syringe access authorization for Stanislaus County.


Stanislaus County Courthouse
800 11th Street
Downtown Modesto

AUGUST 2, 2010 @ 8:30 AM in Dept. 8

Upcoming trial dates TBA
Added to the calendar on Tue, Jul 13, 2010 9:41AM
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