Steve Kubby who ran for Governor of California in 1998 was arrested for possessing medical marijuana. In jail, he nearly died from lack of access to the drug.
In the 1960, Steve Kubby was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called pheochromocytoma. This disease is normally terminal and his doctor Vincent DeQuattro was amazed to find him still alive in 1996, not to mention in good enough condition to run for the Governor’s office. Kubby ran and lost as the Libertarian Party candidate for Governor of California. Following his loss, he went on to craft what would eventually become Proposition 215 that legalized medical marijuana in the state. In 1999, however, he was raided by police. When he was put in prison, he was denied access to medical marijuana. Even this short break from his medication caused a disease he had lived with for forty years to almost kill him.
Steve Kubby is not what the government would have you think of when you hear marijuana smoker. Mr. Kubby is an accomplished political activist, public speaker, and author. His doctor Vincent DeQuattro believes that smoking marijuana, “not only controlled the symptoms of pheochromocytoma, but […] has arrested the cancer’s growth. Every other patient I’ve had with Steve’s condition, had died in this interval of time.” Kubby was arrested after agents began surveillance on him home. The police saw a journalist they thought to be a Jamaican drug dealer enter and leave the house. Of course the man was not a drug dealer, but that did not matter after the raid. To this day Kubby insists he was targeted for his involvement in the marijuana legalization movement.
When Kubby was raided the police found 265 pot plants, although most were unsexed seedlings which the law Kubby crafted sets no limits on. Kubby was eventually acquitted on all marijuana charges, but in 2001 was arrested for peyote and mushrooms found during the raid. Fearing for his medical safety Kubby, his wife, and children fled to Canada. Five years later in 2006, they were deported back to San Francisco where they were met by police.
Kubby’s disease causes spikes in his adrenalin levels. This leads to high blood pressure, migraines, and panic attacks. Shortly after being taken into custody Kubby started to experience the effects of being without his medication. When the guards checked on him the following day, Kubby was laying on the floor sweating, shivering, and soaked in his own urine and vomit. After pleading by his lawyer, he was given access to the synthetic THC compound, Marinol.
Kubby was targeted by the government because of his involvement in the marijuana legalization movement. As is too common the case, the police used the pretense of looking for drugs to conduct an illegal search of his home and make all the family to pass a drug test. Their goal was not to uphold the law, but to punish an individual. After a decade-long nightmare for Kubby and his family, in 2008 California Superior Court Judge David Nelson threw out all the charges against Kubby. Today, Kubby continues his activism and is considering another run for the Libertarian Party Presidential nomination.