Ever since Angela Brown’s son suffered a severe brain injury in 2011, he's been complaining of excruciating pain. Brown tried everything to ease her son’s suffering, but said nothing worked except cannabis oil. Although the 38-year-old Minnesota mother seemingly had good intentions, she's now being charged with possession of a controlled illegal substance and child endangerment. She could now face up to two years in jail and a $6,000 fine.
The now 15-year-old Trey Brown was playing baseball when he was struck in the head by a line drive ball — a hard-flying, close-to-the-ground ball traveling on a straight path. After the incident, Angela said her son suffered regularly from head pain, seizures, and muscular spasms. "He was in so much pain that he didn't want to live," Brown told the Huffington Post. “No parent can understand it until they have to sit in their child's bed and hold them down so they don't hurt themselves, or they have to sit beside them because they hurt so much that they can't handle your touch."
Desperate to help Trey, Brown said she and her husband David tried several medicines, but unfortunately, nothing was effective. Brown said a doctor recommended the couple to try cannabis oil, so they went to Boulder, Colo., to purchase the medicinal drug. She began giving her son the oil, and to their amazement, the couple saw immediate results."Once it hit his system, Trey said the pressure in his brain was relieved," she said. "You could literally see the muscle spasms stopping. He felt amazing.”
The Browns were pleased with their son’s progress and shared the great news, but not everyone was happy for them. Someone the family knew called the police to report Angela for administering medical marijuana in a state where the drug is still illegal. Lac qui Parle County investigators confiscated the medicinal oil and called Child Protective Services, who showed up to evaulate Trey. When he told them that he wasn’t getting high but soley taking oil the to rid his pain, and that it was working, Child Protective Services closed the case, but the criminal charges still remain.
Cases like these are all too familiar. Like Angela, the parents of 6-year-old Charlotte Figi were desperate to see their her healthy. As a baby, she started having seizures, and they only worsened over time. When doctors told Charlotte’s parents to expect the worse, the Figis were determined to find a solution, trying new diets and medicines. But like the Browns, they saw no improvement. Their daughter’s health continued to decline, and the Figis started to consider alternative treatments, including cannabis oil. The drug worked, significantly reducing the severity of Charlotte’s seizures and improving her speech.
The difference between Charlotte and Trey is geographical. In Colorado, medical and recreational marijuana is legal. Minnesota legislatures approved a medical marijuana bill, but it's not expected to go into effect until next July. The Browns don’t want to want to wait a year, and they're hoping the case gets dropped so that they can focus on their son’s health. Now that he’s off the cannabis oil, Angela says Trey’s condition has spiraled out of control. The couple plans to move to Colorado so they can treat their son without worrying about prosecution.
“He’s been off the oil since mid-April and the horrible migraine headaches and body pains are back," she told HuffPo. “He can’t be a normal 15-year-old.” The couple created a page on GoFundMe to raise money for a legal team. So far, they've raised $6,010.