Chris Diaz, 22, appears at 1:30 this afternoon (Wednesday the 30th November) in Judge Moorman's courtroom where Texas is waiting for him in the form of an extradition warrant. If Judge Moorman approves it, Diaz will get a long bus ride back to the Lone Star State where it's legal to execute retarded people and shoot your wife if you find her in bed with another man, but it's illegal to possess a half ounce of cannabis extract. That kind of half ounce is sooooooo illegal in Texas that it can get you 5 to 99 years in prison, which is the sentence Diaz, father of two small children, is looking at.
Diaz is originally from Texas. As a minor child of 15, and on the recommendation and a prescription of Roby Mitchell M.D. (Dr. Fitt on facebook/Amarillo, Texas), he was instructed to use hemp oil to repair damage to his lungs. The doctor was right. Cannabis worked. Chris could breathe. The doctor also suggested to his young patient and his family that they move to a state where medical cannabis is legal, or at least semi-legal. The family took that advice and moved to Mendocino County in 2007.
The young man has had serious lung problems since infancy, and has since been diagnosed with lung disease, advanced chronic asthma, multiple chemical sensitivity disorder, spinal meningitis, collapsed lungs, allergies — the works. In 2007 after the move to California, and before he had gotten on a steady treatment plan, Diaz suffered the collapse of both his lungs and underwent emergency surgery at Howard Hospital in Willits. He was 10 days in ICU. Diaz's family says their son's near death experience "was a life changing event."
The family takes up the story from here. "Chris would make the decision to use only organic, all natural, the way God intended, remedies to treat his lifelong disability, and improve his health and the health of his children and family. By the end of 2007, still living at home under the supervision of his parents in Mendocino County, Chris had completely stopped taking all chemical and/or pharmaceutical medications. No more breathing machines, steroids, inhalers, nasal sprays...Since that time he has been a 100% Medical Cannabis Patient, who practices only an organic lifestyle and cannabis to treat his disease. He is a 100% Organic Vegetarian breathing clean air, everyday, in the 2000 year old Redwoods on the North Coast in the Village of Mendocino.
"In 2010, on a family emergency, he and his entire family traveled from California to Texas to visit his great grandmother who was in ill health and hospitalized. The family had plans of being gone for only ten days. Chris had only enough medication to last for a short visit. While traveling alone at night, he was admittedly profiled for being in a California car, by the mayor of Bangs, Texas. The mayor also happened to be a Texas State Trooper. Chris was arrested and held in confinement for 80 days. He was reported in the newspapers, by the Brown County Sheriff's Office, as being a flight risk, which in turn, discouraged any bail bond agency from working with the family.
"It was reported on television by the Texas Department of Public Safety that Chris was in possession of 'more marijuana than just he could use.' This amount has been recorded in court documents and in the newspapers as exactly 14 grams of Cannabis Concentrate. In custody, Chris was denied medical treatment, and his dietary restrictions were not honored or even recognized. "After 80 days, an $80,000 house and $5000.00 cash (many donations, thank you) his family secured his release. Chris returned to Brown County Court for many court appearances where it became clear to him and his court appointed attorney that he would not receive a fair trial. On October 25th, 2010 at his hearing, it was decided by him, his court-appointed attorney, and his family, that Chris would take on representation of himself, and return to California to seek additional legal advice and support from his peers and experts in the Medical Cannabis field.
"He returned to California after that to begin yet another journey to save his life, this time from the State of Texas. He was not "on the run."
" In December 2010, he was left to care for his two beautiful, 100% organic, vegan, local Mendo children, on his own. After 6 years of turbulent relations, the mother of his children made the decision to move, live, and attend job training in another state. At that time, Chris had just turned 21 and she was 26. On January 18th, 2011 he had a scheduled hearing in Brown County, Texas, that District Attorney Michael Murray, and Judge Stephen Ellis, would not re-schedule. Before that, the Judge had denied all motions entered by the defense, and would not allow a medical marijuana defense. Texas does not recognize medical marijuana. At that time DA Michael Murray had still not provided the legally required evidence to the defense, especially the allegation that Chris was a "drug dealer.
"The state of Texas has charged Chris with a 1st degree felony, the same charge for a murder with a prison sentence of 5-99 years. Yet this young father has hurt no one, he has caused no harm or injury. The State of Texas claims he has "harmed their dignity."
"On January, 18th, 2011, after the refusal by the Texas DA and Judge to re-schedule the court hearing, and Chris's non-appearance, a bond forfeiture was entered and an arrest warrant issued. The Texas newspapers reported that Chris was on the run. A statement issued by Brown County Sheriff Bobby Grubbs vowed, "We'll find him again" and "He'll be back in custody." But Chris was never on the run, and has worked countless hours on how to defend himself and protect his family from these lies and allegations. He has continued living, working, and raising his family in Mendocino while arguing long distance with Texas authorities.
"The continued refusal of co-operation from Brown County, Texas, and an active "fugitive from justice" charge, the stress and anxiety of all this caused Chris serious respiratory failure in February of this year. The sudden failure of his lungs sent him to the emergency room for the first time in over 3 years where he had to be hooked up to a breathing machine.
"On October 30th, 2011, on the tip of local informant Alan Keifer, it was reported to the Mendocino County Sheriff's Department that Chris was at Harvest Market in the Village of Mendocino. Two Mendocino County Sheriff deputies came to Harvest Market, put handcuffs on him, and violently threw him in their car — all in front of his two young children. Chris now sits in the Mendocino County Jail where he is currently being denied medical treatment and his specific dietary requirements are ignored. Chris is awaiting an extradition hearing that is taking place today on November 30th at 1:30 in Judge Moorman's court in Ukiah, to be possibly taken to his death in Texas. He has a local public defender that he finally received after 10 days without representation. Chris is worried that his public defender has not explained what the extradition process is, or how to defend himself against it. He has been told by the public defender, "They know who you are, and they will prove it, and you will be sent back to Texas, and you will have to defend yourself there."
"Please help us to not allow this to happen; please come to court today, November 30th at 1:30 in Ukiah to show your support that this man should not be sent to Texas.
"Due to these extraordinary circumstances the family has been put into serious financial hardship, and any support you offer is helpful. Thank You. Donations can be made by Paypal with recipient email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
You may get more information by calling 707-513-3775 or visit online at www.facebook.com/stop215extraditions Thank you for all your support and blessings. Together we can make a difference. Extra special thanks to everyone at Leonard Moore Cooperative for your support, kindness, and ability to see the truth. Thank you for being concerned for the well being of patients above all else. You all have shown what it is to be a building block of true community. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. The Parents of Chris Diaz, Mendocino."