Woman claims weed stops her from feeling suicidal

"Either I am being told a furphy or the doctor needs to be struck off."

These were the words Magistrate Cameron Press spoke in the Rockhampton Magistrates Court when a defendant claimed her marijuana use was for medicinal purposes.

Janis Jazmine Walmsley pleaded guilty to two charges last week, including possession of a dangerous drug, after police searched her home in May and found 53 grams of cannabis in a bedroom drawer.

But it was when Walmsley's defence solicitor Brian McGowran claimed a doctor had agreed to her drug use for pain relief and depression that Mr Press fired up.

"(If the) patient is sitting there with depression the doctor would have to say, if he has any credibility whatsoever, that you should not be touching cannabis because it would be exasperating the depression," he said.

"There is a significant problem with this submission."

It was then that Walmsley herself spoke up in court, claiming cannabis was the only thing that got her "out of bed" without wanting to kill herself.

At this point the court had previously heard Walmsley had been widowed two years ago, and had sustained serious lifelong injuries from a horse riding accident when she was eight-years-old.

But Mr Press did not accept her point.

"I do not accept there is only one form of drug in the world that is assisting you and that that is cannabis. I just don't accept that," he said.

"I think you need to go and get better medical advice and perhaps get a referral to a pain specialist."

Mr Press sentenced Walmsley to three months imprisonment, immediately suspended, for operational period for 12 months.

She had initially been offered probation for 12 months.


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