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Santa Barbara Gets Bulk Of Pot Farm Raid Suit Tossed

A recent federal court ruling dismissed most claims against Santa Barbara County in a lawsuit concerning a cannabis farm raid. The case, filed by the owners of Arroyo Verde Farms, alleged constitutional violations and overreach during a 2021 raid by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department. The raid resulted in the destruction of the farm’s cannabis crop and property, along with criminal charges against the owners, which were later dismissed.

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Key Points of the Court's Decision:

Claims Dismissed: The judge dismissed several claims, including those alleging violation of due process, unlawful seizure under the Fourth Amendment, and state law claims for conversion and trespass. The court found that the plaintiffs did not sufficiently establish that the county's actions were unconstitutional or exceeded lawful authority​ (Democracy Docket)​​ (Courthouse News)​.

Remaining Claims: Some claims, particularly those related to the destruction of the crop, may proceed. These claims argue that the raid and subsequent destruction of property were not conducted in compliance with legal standards, thus causing unwarranted financial harm to the farm​ (Courthouse News)​​ (Democracy Docket)​.

Legal Context: The raid was part of a broader enforcement action against unlicensed cannabis operations. Santa Barbara County has been active in regulating cannabis cultivation, often facing legal challenges regarding the balance between enforcement and growers' rights​ (Democracy Docket)​​ (Courthouse News)​.



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