Man pleads guilty to having too much medical marijuana
BAY CITY, MI — Nearly two years after police raided their Bangor Township house in search of excessive medical marijuana, a couple’s cases have been resolved with plea deals.
David A. Dabrowski, 65, on Tuesday, March 7, appeared in Bay County Circuit Court and pleaded guilty to one count of delivering or manufacturing marijuana. The charge is a four-year felony.
In exchange, the prosecution agreed to recommend Dabrowski receive a delayed sentence, during which he’d effectively be on probation. If he receives the delay and is successful on it, he’ll be allowed to withdraw his plea and swap it with a guilty plea to misdemeanor possession of marijuana.
The same day Dabrowski entered his plea, prosecutions motioned to dismiss the same felony charge faced by his wife, Sandra K. Dabrowski, 64.
The Dabrowskis, who were arraigned on Sept. 9, 2015, faced trial the day the plea deal was accepted. Their cases date back to April 2015.
Whether a Bangor Township couple broke the law by having too much “usable” pot in their medical marijuana growing operation is the point of contention in ongoing legal proceedings.
In a December 2015 preliminary examination, Bay County Sheriff’s Detective Barry Gatza, a member of the Bay Area Narcotics Enforcement Team — or BAYANET — testified he was tasked with investigating an anonymous tip that the Dabrowskis were illegally selling marijuana from their home in the 2900 block of Bangor Road.
He testified that in the early morning of April 27, he pulled two trash bags from a garbage can at the end of the Dabrowskis’ driveway.
“There were several items consistent with marijuana grows that we’ve come in contact with,” Gatza said. Among the items were trimmed marijuana leaves. “It was approximately just under 10 pounds, I believe,” he said.
Gatza obtained a search warrant and later on April 27, approximately a dozen police officers executed it on the Dabrowskis’ property. At the time, David Dabrowski was home selling firearms to two men, Gatza testified. Sandra Dabrowski was not present.
“There were firearms throughout the house,” Gatza testified, adding David Dabrowski is a licensed federal firearms dealer.
Police recovered a large amount of marijuana plants and usable pot, most notably in “the entire basement.” Throughout the house, officers found 96 marijuana plants, 37.7 grams of loose marijuana drying in a basket, and another batch on a table weighing approximately 1,400 grams. Police also found one marijuana plant and marijuana branches in a pole barn, Gatza testified.
In a freezer, police found marijuana oil and several pounds of usable marijuana, Gatza said.
Gatza interviewed David Dabrowski in a BAYANET van, he said. Dabrowski told him he and his wife were medical marijuana caregivers with five patients each.
“Between Sandra and himself, they did co-mingle the plants,” Gatza testified. “They didn’t separate them at all. As far as the daily operations needed to maintain the plants, he did most of the farming on the plants, including Sandra’s.”
Sandra Dabrowski’s jobs included trimming the plants, packaging the crop and setting up purchases, Gatza said David Dabrowski told him.
“He stated that obviously he does provide marijuana to his patients,” Gatza testified. “I think the rate he charges them was $130 an ounce, then he told me he also provides marijuana to people outside his patient list. He charges them $200 an ounce. He said he always makes sure they’re medical marijuana patients, just not his patients. He always makes sure they have a (medical marijuana) card.”
Under the state’s Medical Marijuana Act, patients can have 2.5 ounces of usable marijuana and caregivers can grow up to 12 plants producing 2.5 ounces of usable marijuana for each of their five patients and themselves. With both Dabrowskis being caregivers but only Sandra Dabrowski a patient as well, the couple could legally have a total of 132 plants and 27.5 grams of usable, or processed, marijuana.
Circuit Judge Joseph K. Sheeran is to sentence David Dabrowski at 9 a.m. on Monday, April 17.