Jarrow mechanic grew cannabis to help treat ADHD, court told

A drug user grew cannabis at his home to treat symptoms of ADHD when medication failed to help him, a court heard.

Tuesday, 16th March 2021, 6:00 am
A stock picture of a cannabis plant. Keith Willis, 24, was found by police with eight plants.
A stock picture of a cannabis plant. Keith Willis, 24, was found by police with eight plants.

Keith Willis, 24, was found by police with eight plants which he said he was using to treat the symptoms of the condition.

They were uncovered when officers turned up at his door in Aberdeen Drive, Jarrow, on Monday, August 24, and were allowed in to search the property.

Prosecutor Ian Martin told South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court that other cannabis plants that had not taken to growing were present.

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But he admitted their combined growth potential was not enough for Willis to be charged with cannabis production.

The mechanic was instead charged with possession of the illegal Class B drug to which he pleaded guilty.

He has now been hit with a fine and court costs of over £300 for his first adult criminal conviction.

Mr Martin said: “At 11.30pm officers had cause to attend Aberdeen Drive.

“They entered, and when there they located a small cannabis grow in the bedroom of the defendant.

“There were a number of tents and plants at various stages of growth but only eight were effective plants.

“This puts it below the level of cultivation which is why it is charged with simple possession.

“The defendant does have a limited record, from 2014 there was a possession of cannabis as a youth.”

ADHD, the abbreviation for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a condition that affects people's behaviour which can make them seem restless, have trouble concentrating and cause them to act on impulse.

David Forrester, defending, said: “This is his first adult conviction.

“He was diagnosed with ADHD. He was given tablets which didn’t impact which led to him growing cannabis which is what this is down for.

“I’ve had to explain to him that this is illegal. He’s said this is how he gets through the day.

“He works as a mechanic. He pleads guilty at the first opportunity and should get maximum credit for that.”

Magistrates told Willis they had taken his early guilty plea into consideration in fining him £193.

They also ordered him to pay court costs of £85 and a £34 victim surcharge.

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