US v Watts: Paul Free Wants to Know, What Do You Think?


Paul Free questions US v WattsMarijuana Lifer Project director Cheri Sicard recently got this message from lifer Paul Free, who wondered if most people even know about the Watts decision he talks about below, and what they think of it if they do.  We didn’t know but told him we would ask.  

“I am writing this from my cell in the federal penitentiary, Atwater, California. We are “locked down” for a minute as some fool decided to stick a piece of steal into another (fool).

Anyway, I want to thank all who wrote President Obama on my behalf and those who have gone out of their way to help secure freedom for all of us pot POWs. THANK YOU!

Now. I want to ask you this: Do you think it possible for a person to be sentenced, in America, to time in prison for crimes a jury had acquitted them of? WELL THEY CAN & IT HAPPENS EVERY DAY!

Yup, on January 06, 1997, the United States Supreme Court ruled that, from that day forward, any judge can sentence any person to time in prison for charges a jury had acquitted them of. The case is: U.S. V. WATTS and you can read it all at: 519 U.S. 148 (1997)(the government’s copy of the Supreme Court’s decision); OR you can go to THE YALE LAW JOURNAL, Vol. 110, page 1156 n.348.

You can also go to any law library and do a word search and find it. I did so just today and found it had been used dozens of times just in the last two months. For example, I found it used in U.S. V. SADLER, 2016 U.S. LEXIS 3827 (10th Cir. March 01, 2016). It has been used well over 600 times that I know of.

SO, I ask you: Is this justice? Is this what you thought the U.S. Constitution allows? Also, why haven’t members of Congress stood up against this decision?

Tell me PLEASE, what do YOU think?

You can write to Paul Free at this address, or comments posted on this page will be forwarded to him.

Paul  Free #42235-198
USP Atwater

PO Box 19001
Atwater, CA 95301



About Author


  1. It’s horrible Paul. The injustices being carried out on a daily basis. Congress is afraid….afraid of losing their big high paying do nothing jobs. Our country is a mess and at a turning point. While France is experiencing a revolution, I believe we are preparing for it in our country. I pray for your freedom every day. No one should be in jail for a God sent, life saving plant. I pray for your health and that the cancers will be healed. I just wish we could get you cannabis sauve….it would heal you! I continue my fight out here for your freedom and the freedom of others who have been violated in the name of our Constitution. They have destroyed our Constitution.

  2. Debbi Peugh Love on

    My husband and I were busted for possession with intent to distribute in 2003. We were fortunate enough to have recommendations and the new law for medical marijuana. It saved our butts.
    After our acquittal the first dispensaries showed up.
    Thank God the judge followed the law & we didn’t go to jail.
    I don’t know why they are doing this. It’s wrong on so many levels.
    I wo
    I will pray for him