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Rehman appealing marijuana lawsuit

The lawsuit brought by Senoia resident Don Rehman against the Senoia City Council over his interpretation of a city ordinance dealing with misdemeanor possession of marijuana was dismissed in May by Coweta County Superior Court Judge Dennis Blackmon. But Rehman will have another day in court when his case is appealed to the Ga. Supreme Court in the fall.

Rehman said his appeal has been accepted by the Ga. Supreme Court and is on the court’s calendar for October, adding that he has been permitted to include nearly a dozen additional pages in his appeal documents.

Rehman in the March 15 court filing in Coweta County Superior Court said the city ordinance dealing with misdemeanor amounts of marijuana, in quantities less than one ounce, essentially mandates that males are required to be in possession of more than an ounce of marijuana to be considered law abiding citizens. Possession of less than an ounce is handled through the local court as a misdemeanor while possession of more than an ounce is a felony under state law.

Rehman contended that the wording of the ordinance essentially mandates that all males within the city limits must have in their possession one ounce or more of marijuana. Obeying the ordinance as written would make criminals out of law abiding citizens, the suit said.

Judge Blackmon in his full dismissal of the lawsuit was adamant in his disagreement with Rehman’s position.

“Are you telling me that I am here and you’ve got me here, and you’ve got all these people here to explain to you what the Senoia ordinance means when it says you can’t possess less than an ounce of marijuana? Are you seriously telling me that that’s why I am here listening to this case?” Blackmon asked.

“Let me tell you something, you have wasted this court’s time,” Blackmon continued. “You have wasted all these people’s time. I do not know what possessed you to come into this court with something this ridiculous. This is the most ridiculous thing I have ever had in court, ever.”

Rehman maintained that his case before Judge Blackmon should have been decided differently, adding that he would appeal the decision to the Ga. Supreme Court.

“I respectfully believe that (Judge Blackmon) made an error by dismissing my civil action; and (Blackmon’s) determination of the grounds for dismissal were not in consonance with a June 8, 2009 Supreme Court of Georgia decision on petition for mandamus matters, which the court had in hand when it made its ruling on May 29, 2013,” Rehman said after the dismissal.

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SENOIA ORDINANCE 46-7 states: “It shall be unlawful for any person to have in his possession less than one ounce of marijuana.” This Senoia Ordinance exempts females by using only male gender language - the State Statute does not.

This Senoia Ordinance fails to clearly prohibit possession of a one ounce amount of Marijuana - the State Statute does.

This Senoia Ordinance fails to indicate the violation is a “misdemeanor” and by being totally silent on that aspect, an ordinary person exercising common sense might be led to believe that in the City of Senoia this criminal offense might be a felony or not a criminal statute at all because it refers to no criminal punishment; thus is unconstitutionally void for vagueness and silent on this aspect - the State Statute makes it clearly a misdemeanor.

The Senoia Ordinance fails to mention any specific penalty whatsoever for violation - The State Statute specifically prescribes it.

The Senoia Ordinance fails to mention an accused’s right to be tried in Coweta County Court instead of Senoia Magistrate Court - The State Statute clearly communicates that right.

The Senoia Ordinance fails to mention the existence of Georgia State Statute §16-13-2, thus unconstitutionally hides vital information from the public and all persons who might be accused of a crime under this Senoia Ordinance and thus is unconstitutionally void for vagueness.

The Senoia Ordinance is so defectively worded that it has a double meaning such that it can be read to actually require the possession within the City Limits of Senoia, by all males regardless of age, of one ounce or more of marijuana; whereas, the Georgia State Statute §16-13-2 is crystal clear in its intent so as not to be misunderstood.

Therefore, the Senoia Ordinance cannot exist as anything that is Constitutional and this is what this matter is all about now at the Supreme Court of Georgia. Additionally, on May 29, 2013, the City of Senoia, its elected Government, Mayor and 4 Councilmen, through their City Attorney, admitted in the Public Hearing, to the Coweta County Superior Court [Judge Blackmon] that Senoia did not need that Ordinance; yet, they spend Taxpayers' money to fight Rehman in Court as though they need that Ordinance; when in less than 3 minutes at a Mayor/City Council Meeting they could get it off the "books" and the matter would have been settled.

Further, at the Superior Court of Coweta, the elected Government of Senoia, Mayor and 4 Councilman, through the City Attorney, gave to Judge Blackmon a whole bunch of inapplicable case law and inapplicable Georgia Statute whereby they managed to get Judge Blackmon upset over the case being in his Court, and that is why he inappropriately said those things to Rehman that are quoted in this news article.

The elected Government of Senoia, Mayor and 4 Councilmen, through their City Attorney, filed a Motion for Sanctions at the Supreme Court of Georgia trying to get Rehman fined for frivolous appeal and to try and prevent him from being able to file his BRIEF FOR APPELLANT. The reaction of the 7 Supreme Court Justices so far was to decide that Rehman could have 11 more pages in his Appellant's Brief, total of 45 pages [which included numerous case law citations and analysis] because of the magnitude of the case, and the 7 Justices so ordered.

The City of Senoia, its Mayor and 4 Councilmen [through their City Attorney] will not be able to get away with at the Supreme Court of Georgia with citing to the 7 Justices inapplicable Statute and Case Law as they did at the Superior Court of Coweta County.

The "ball" is now in the elected Government of Senoia "Court" because their Brief of Appellees is shortly due for filing at the Supreme Court of Georgia.

Rehman has requested the 7 Justices permit him oral argument in this case even though he has no Attorney thus is pursuing this litigation as "pro se" [for ones' self].

Perhaps the Supreme Court of Georgia will in effect provide a "wake up call" to the elected Senoia Government, its Mayor and 4 Councilmen, that this is still the United States of America and the Local Ordinances of Senoia cannot be unconstitutional in nature, and that the elected Government of Senoia cannot itself be "above the law" but must be held accountable to it and responsible to "we the People".

Citizen_Steve's picture

Hey re0046 - I agree with your ideals, but my take is that we're responsible to interpret the intent of ordinances. Can we really expect government lawyers for podunk southern towns such as Senoia to be able to articulate a regulation in logical, unambiguous terms? I don't think so.

Steve

You hit the nail on the head about interpreting the intent of ordinances. This is clearly something that is conveniently overlooked in this ongoing saga. It seems that everything that doesn't go this man's way is somehow unconstitutional, deplorable, an abomination, unethical, etc. Same ole song and dance....boring.

An overreaching government is good if it helps to force your will over others until karma sends it right back.

Jose
Church of Smoke

Maybe some awareness will come out of the irresponsible laws against an ancient medicinal herb and someone will learn how to read and write.

Jose
Church of Smoke

Anyone can make a claim, file motions to the courts pro se and fill the newspaper with "agenda-like" allegations. The problem is that this person has no credible facts and is seriously lacking in common sense.

This appears to be the same type of frivolous hype and irresponsible legal action that was demonstrated in Florida during the 1990's. This person posing as a "wannabe" attorney was soundly rejected several times by the Florida courts (dismissed with prejudice) and now is inline to receive delivery of the same judicial fate. Some people never learn from their self-inflicted wounds.

Rehman is fully aware that State laws supersede city ordinances. This is one reason why the municipality is not solely dependent on written Ordinance. However, he also realizes that any possession of marijuana is illegal. Yet, he continues to spend public tax dollars needlessly.

Rehman is not suing the State.

Jose
Church of Smoke

A foolish man keeps doing/saying the same thing again and again, expecting a different result. Mr. Rehman has already demonstrated his foolishness in continuing to pursue this nonsensical litigation. Now, re0046 has stepped up to once again, foolishly, to try to sell this nonsense with support for Mr. Rehman's claims. Will you never learn? How many times must the lesson be taught?

thcomments

Maybe his foolishness will stop when Georgians learn how to read.

Jose
Church of Smoke

It's the duty of the legal system to enforce the letter of the law, not what their sensibilities tell them it should be.

When I say "sensibilities" I am referring to brain numbing logic from the Georgia Christian Taliban who believe marijuana smokers would smoke 24 hours every day if it was legal.

Jose
Church of Smoke

Not a single one of your posts has anything to do with the real issue addressed in the article. If you cannot contribute a valid response to the real issue, please go away. Leave this blog to people who address the article, not someone like yourself who apparently has a one-track mind about their own personal "weed" issue!

thcomments

I made the below comment in another Blog on a different story, where the comments about me are more worse than here. So, some of the things said below don't necessarily apply to the folks here but maybe some of my comments made elsewhere, by being repeated here can lessen or lighten the direction that this Blog has taken. Then again - maybe not.

Gentlemen and/or Ladies,

I can't tell the gender of who is who from the anonymous names of those of you that continue to write words of seemingly hate and all manner of accusations against me. So, thus, I began my greeting with "Gentlemen and/or Ladies" since I cannot be sure of Gender but wish to be "politically correct" now that I am running for the Office of Mayor of Senoia.

To those of you that defended in this Blog the sacrifices that Military Service in the United States Armed Forces brings to the serving individuals and their families, I wish to say a profound, sincere, and heartfelt "God Bless" and thank you for your Military Service. During the first of my two tours of duty in Vietnam during the war, my wife with then two small children thought and grieved for 2 days that I was dead, blown up by the Viet Cong - but by the Grace of Almighty God I had escaped injury when the place I was billeted in was blown up.

I entered Military Service as a Private E-1 advanced to Private First Class, applied for Officer Candidate School [OCS] and became a Second Lieutenant, met my wife at my first duty station upon being commissioned as an Officer and we have been married over 59 years. I'd like to relate one story from my military service then will drop that subject.

As those of you that have served in military service realize, most Army officers cannot get beyond the grade of Captain unless they do well in company command. I was given Company Command of a Cable Construction Company while it was in the field in Germany. Its mission was to lay cables that would connect by wire the various tactical communications facilities in an Infantry Division in the field. Shortly after I took command the Company first Sergeant asked to speak to me privately and said to me that I didn't know a thing about cable construction and to let him give the operational orders to the Company while in the field and the orders would look like they came from me; and at that point that I felt comfortable he would step back and I would issue the orders. The smartest decision I ever made in my lifetime was to not say "First Sergeant who do you think you are talking to" - Instead, I said "Okay Sarge its a deal" and I shook his hand in gratitude. Thereafter, in a few weeks I learned all about cable construction, took over from the First Sergeant did all the technical planning and operational Orders and ended up with the most successful Company Command anyone could ever hope for. Throughout my entire 26-1/2 years military service I had the greatest respect for the Non-commissioned officers and the enlisted men who are the backbone and the strength of our United States Armed Forces. The fact that I was blessed to get from Private E-1 to Full Colonel with 26-1/2 years Active Duty Military Service I attribute not to my efforts alone, but to those of the numerous persons with whom I had the privilege to be associated with that worked with me, were loyal and supportive and to all those who were my "mentors'. So, I am not a "Power Drunk" retired "Tin Soldier" as many of you in this Blog may think me to be and you write about me thus - but rather a proud of his Military Service and many sacrifices American, who now wishes to be the Mayor of Senoia.

As regards my past which one or more of you wishes all to examine, the facts are that after retirement I went to work for a Defense Contractor and as the person in charge of Logistics Management I discovered that my employer was committing Fraud against the United States Government by inflating the prices for parts for repair of military equipment and falsely charging the United States Government for logistics analysis work that was not being performed; etc.. I reported this to the Company, trying to be a loyal employee, but I did not know that the dishonesty went all the way up to the CEO of that Company. Instead of stopping the fraud that I had reported, the Company retaliated against me and then fired me. Meanwhile, I reported the fraud directly to the Government and a criminal investigation started. Evidence of the fraud was obtained by the Government but at the Federal Trial on my wrongful termination lawsuit the Federal Judge decided to prevent the Criminal Investigators from testifying because the company had not yet been convicted of any crime. An appeal all the way up to the Supreme Court of the United States was unsuccessful. While I lost, I was proud that I had been a whisleblower and did not participate in Fraud against the United States Government. It cost me about $145,000 in litigation and it cost the company 1.2 million dollars; however, a few years later the company went out of business because the Government stopped giving military contracts to that Company because of the documented fraud. The people who unfortunately suffered were all those innocent employees who had nothing to do with the fraud because the entire management of that Company were crooks.

So, so much for that part of my past, now let's get back to Senoia matters. [Although I now imagine some of you will be making your usual "remarks" about that and will refuse to let go!]

To the person who indicated here that my case is not scheduled for oral argument at the Supreme Court of Georgia, Sir or Madam, you don't know what you are talking about. The Supreme Court of Georgia has just published the October 2013 Oral Argument Calendar and my Appeal is scheduled for October 8, 2013 at the 2 PM Oral Argument Session. So as a non-lawyer, granted the privilege of Oral Argument, I will be standing in front of 7 Justices of that Court and respectfully presenting my case to them. I have urged all here to await the outcome of the case but some insist in taking me to task before the case is finished. There is more at stake here for the Citizens of Senoia and for the Public in every City in the entire State of Georgia than you can ever imagine - but this Blog is not the time and place to go into that.

In conclusion, those of you who, from hiding your identity, wish to continue to hurl insults at me, it's a free country so you have every right to continue to waste your time. My candidacy for Mayor of Senoia offers an alternative for the voters if they so choose. The spewing of anger and insults here at me in this Blog only serves to demonstrate that those who have other candidates of choice that they will vote for, want to in effect "poison the electorate" against this Candidate in a manner and a style that is disgraceful to the finest traditions we Americans possessed for so many years. As Jesus said on the Cross moments before he died, I now say to those of you who continue with words of hate: "Forgive them Lord for they know not what they do"!

Respectfully,
Colonel (Ret.) Don Rehman
Senoia Resident and 2013 Candidate for Mayor

Similar story, except no bankruptcy

Is it hate when someone posts a URL to a website where a citizen can gain an understanding of your character, a website where YOUR OWN WORDS condemn you?
Is it hate when someone posts FACTS that demonstrate your character, facts that are validated by your own words and/or actions?
Is it hate when your fellow veterans berate you for trying to use your military service for personal gain?
To each of these questions, I believe the answer is a resounding NO!

To the other side,
Is it hate when you use a term like ‘murderous assassination’ against others?
Is it hate when you threaten lawsuits against neighbors when they disagree with you?
Is it hate when you constantly accuse the Mayor and Council of illegal activities, all the while knowing that your accusations are false?
To these three, the answer is easily yes.

Your quote of Jesus was offensive, but also inaccurate. We know exactly what we do! But I will counter with a paraphrase of another Scripture –
“Get the log out of your own eye before you try to remove the speck from mine!”

thcomments

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