Pubdate: Thu, 09 Mar 2000
Source: Auburn Journal
Copyright: 2000 Auburn Journal
Contact:  1030 High St., Auburn, CA 95603
Author: Jessica R. Towhey, Journal Staff Writer


Steve and Michele Kubby, on trial for possession and conspiracy to
cultivate and sell marijuana and possession of controlled substances, fired
their attorneys this week.

Superior Court Judge James L. Roeder on Tuesday ruled in favor of the
Kubbys' petition to relieve their attorneys from the case.

According to Steve Kubby, the attorneys - Dale Wood and Joseph Farina - are
potential witnesses in the medical marijuana trial that is now expected to
start on May 1.

"There is a very distinct possibility that we will be called as witnesses,"
Wood said Wednesday.

According to Steve Kubby, he and Michele consulted with their attorneys as
they proceeded with a grow operation of medical marijuana at their Olympic
Village home.

The Kubbys were arrested Jan. 19, 1999, at their house where Placer County
deputies found 265 marijuana plants along with other controlled substances.

"(Our attorneys) advised us long before we were arrested on how to act,"
Steve Kubby said. "Anytime we were considering an action that could have
legal repercussions, we asked them for their advice."

In addition, Roeder attempted to negotiate an out-of-court settlement that
would not have included time in jail, but the defense and the Placer County
District Attorney's Office could not agree on terms.

According to Deputy District Attorney Chris Cattran, the prosecution
offered two felony counts on Steve Kubby and one misdemeanor count for
Michele Kubby.

"I think we made them more than a fair offer," Cattran said Wednesday.

Michele Kubby attorney Joseph Farina at first moved to dismiss charges
against his client, Cattran said. After Roeder decided against dropping the
charges, the Kubbys decided to proceed with the trial.

"In out minds, we are not guilty," Michele Kubby said. "We made a decision
early on that we would rather be dead than live under their probation system."

Cattran said it did not matter if the Kubbys wanted to settle or proceed
with the trial, which could last up to two months.

"If they want to plead guilty and accept responsibility for what they did,
fine. If they want to go to trial, they have a constitutional right to that
as well," he said.

Since the Kubbys are now representing themselves, when they return to court
in May they will most likely file to present a new attorney or attorneys.

On Feb. 15, Roeder denied a motion to substitute Wood with J. Tony Serra, a
well-known San Francisco attorney.

Serra said at the time he could not take the case unless it was delayed for
at least a month.

Serra was not available for comment Wednesday but his office said he was
aware the Kubbys' case was in recess until May.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jo-D