CPS snatched infant because of legal medical marijuana prescription

Shawnee Anderson is inconsolable as government agents steal her infant boy.  (Source: Maria Green / CNN)Police State USA

NAPA, CA — A man was placed into handcuffs, a woman sobbed uncontrollably, and their 11-month-old boy was seized by social workers and put into foster care — all because of legally prescribed medical marijuana.  It didn’t matter that no law had been broken; Child Protective Services has the power to split apart families in an instant without a trial, and regularly does across the country.

This heartbreaking situation happened to California couple Shawnee Anderson, 27, and Aaron Hillyer, 34.  After a nosy neighbor called the police because of a loud argument, cops arrived and found doctor-prescribed cannabis — legal for medicinal use in a total of 20 states.  

The couple tried to explain that the plant material was not a crime, and that the couple had state-issued Medical Marijuana ID Cards.  But the cops “didn’t want to see them.”  What’s more, they wanted to remove take their son, Sage, away from them.  The police called for CPS to arrive at the scene.

Shawnee Anderson and son Sage. (Source: Family photo)

“I was pleading with them, ‘Look, you guys, I understand your perception, but we are wonderful parents, hardworking members of our community,’” Hillyer told CNN. “They could not conceive of the fact that you can be a wonderful parent, a decent human being, and medicate with marijuana.”

“Why are you doing this?” Anderson tearfully asked the government agents as she watched her family being split apart before her eyes.

“Your baby doesn’t need to be subjected to marijuana,” an officer retorted, in a recording made on a cell phone.  The fact that the house was messy, with an odor of cannabis, was enough for the government to break apart the family.

Aaron Hillyer was arrested and 11-month-old Sage was put into foster care.  The family describes it as the hardest thing they could imagine — their baby was given away to strangers.  They would not be reunited for 12 days.

The commonly-used cannabis plant is an easy target for child-snatching agencies — even if it is legal.  The agency can deem virtually anything “abusive” or “neglectful” at their discretion.  The targets of CPS are punished first, then attempt to prove their innocence later.  The American tradition of treating people as if they are “innocent until proven guilty” is lost on CPS.

“There are families out there … destroyed over a medicinal plant,” said Hillyer to CNN. “It’s baffling.”

Baffling — yet the stories are numerous.  Many decent families face harassment and separation because of the plant.  Fellow California parents, Scott and Sara Rolick, had their daughter seized when the grandfather allegedly used cannabis as medicine.  Sometimes just advocating for a political position on marijuana is enough to bring down a state investigation of a family — as the Petro family of Florida is discovering.

Many more of these tragic stories can be expected as long as CPS is allowed such broad powers and as long as the Drug War continues to devastate Americans.

See the interview with Aaron and Shawnee below:


4 thoughts on “CPS snatched infant because of legal medical marijuana prescription

  1. This isn`t because of marijuana – this is because of a spiteful, mean spirited neighbor, and a BS govt. agency.

  2. I remember the last time a family broken up because of cps nonsense over marijuana,the child was killed by someone the in the family the state had placed child in foster care,that happened to one of my friends kids,the foster family member and cps involved would no longer be breathing.

  3. I was told by the state of Utah that I was unfit to have custody of my grand daughters because of a 13 year old charge of poss w/intent they stole my family away and adopted out to others and here is the kicker they gave me cutody of their brother my grandson but not these 3 girls also the state of Utah supplied the attorney for the adopting family to fight me in court so ya this shit has to stop!!!!!!

  4. there are people who had even a lesser leg to stand on than this couple did. now imagine cps and law enforcement not doing a damn thing to protect the child/children who really needed it. and if they did respond you hope they’re not placed in an even worse situation. and worse still, you hope someone within those agencies aren’t into child trafficking. at that point there is absolutely nothing you can do unless your willing to lose everything including your life. people will say that isn’t true, I didn’t hear about it. and your not going to. those within the system like say a judge who even try find out real quick that they like breathing. if cps is involved, its motivated by money or worse. i’m not saying there aren’t people who start out with the best of intentions working in these agencies because there are, but when the incentive is centered around money bad things happen. they are definitely setting a precedent.

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