February 25, 2019
LANSING – Citing weak cases and changing laws, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel will this week move to dismiss all the charges against four defendants in two of the three marijuana cases pending in the office’s Criminal Division, and will offer pleas to reduced charges to most of the remaining defendants in all three cases.
“We are focusing all of our efforts and resources on the truly bad actors and those who have non-marijuana related charges,” said Nessel. “They will be held accountable and we will pursue them.”
With that said, added Nessel, “Juries don’t want to convict people on charges concerning something that is now legal,” referring to Michigan’s recent change to legalize recreational marijuana.
“The dismissals against some of the defendants in these cases also reflect that they either were not major players in these marijuana cases or that the evidence is simply insufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that they committed the charged crimes” said Nessel.
The Attorney General will be moving to dismiss all the charges against the following defendants in the following two cases:
People v Mark Sochacki, Terra Sochacki, James Amsdill, Debra Amsdill, Amanda Amsdill – St. Clair County Circuit Court
People v Landon Boggs, Tyler Stanley, Ronald Earley, William Stewart, Robert Bruton, Nichole Lathers, Mark Hanna, Daniel McCready and John Lougheed – Hillsdale County Circuit Court, Jackson County Circuit Court
In the third case, People v Darryl Berry and Johnny Cooper, Genesee County Circuit Court and Livingston County Court (Berry only), there will be no dismissals at this time, but there may be an offer to allow a plea to reduced charges.
The law enforcement agencies involved in each of the listed cases has already been contacted by the Attorney General regarding the office’s new position on the pending cases.