Pubdate: Mon, 21 Mar 2011
Source: Las Vegas Sun (NV)
Copyright: 2011 Las Vegas Sun, Inc
Author: Rich Coleman


An advocate for loosening medical marijuana restrictions in Nevada was
arrested Saturday at her southwest valley home with her husband after
police say they found a marijuana grow operation in the house where
their 13-year-old son also lived.

Rhonda Shade and Lowel Shade, both 37, were charged with child
endangerment, possession of marijuana with the intent to sell,
trafficking in a controlled substance and conspiracy to violate the
Uniform Controlled Substance Act. Lowel Shade also was charged with
possession of a firearm by an ex-felon. Rhonda Shade has denied
selling marijuana.

Police served a search warrant Friday at the couple's home on Valadez
Street, near Wigwam Avenue and Cimarron Road. Investigators said they
found 90 marijuana plants, a "significant amount" of ready for sale
marijuana with an estimated street value of at least $300,000 and a

Rhonda Shade has been an outspoken advocate for the Compassionate
Access in Nevada Act, which would amend state law to remove a
requirement that Nevadans possess a registry identification card to
smoke marijuana for medical purposes. Caregivers would also be able to
grow and share marijuana with more than one patient under the
proposal. Currently, someone can register to use medical marijuana,
but can't sell the drug or grow more than seven plants at a time.

Assemblyman Paul Aizley, D-Las Vegas, has worked with Rhonda Shade on
the initiative. Aizley said late Monday he wasn't aware of Shade's
arrest, but it wouldn't deter him from working toward proposed changes
to the law.

"There's an issue here and that's what I'm looking at. People who are
sick [and] will benefit from marijuana are not being allowed to get it
in any reasonable ways that I know about," Aizley said. "Rhonda's
problems I hope are not true, but are not really germane to me and
what I'm doing."

On the Facebook page for, a website run by Rhonda Shade
that promotes "standards and ethics for legal medical marijuana
patient providers" and advocates for "the rights of legal medical
marijuana patients," she addressed the recent arrest:

"Shortly after I returned home from Carson City for the weekend my
house was raided by the narcotics departments. My garden and meds were
taken. Neither I nor my husband sold marijuana. The firearm found was
an antique 1800s colt black powder pistol," she wrote. "I believe we
have been targeted because of my efforts put forth to change our laws.
I'm sorry if this hurts all the efforts I have put forth in making
things right here."

Rhonda Shade's business, Medicated Janes, was raided last September
when local and federal agents served several search warrants at Las
Vegas medical marijuana consulting clinics, police said.

Police said the most recent case involving Shade is still ongoing and
under investigation. The couple's 13-year-old son was taken to Child
Haven of Southern Nevada. 
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