TWIN FALLS • Anti-nuclear energy activist Peter Rickards has been arrested on a charge of trafficking in marijuana.
Deputies arrested Rickards, a Twin Falls podiatrist and one-time Idaho gubernatorial candidate, at his home in Twin Falls County on May 24.
According to the police arraignment, Rickards, 58, was arraigned Tuesday in Twin Falls County 5th District Court and appeared along with attorney Keith Roark.
According to the report, investigators executed a search warrant at Rickards’ home and seized 4.3 pounds of processed marijuana with an estimated street value of $17,000 and 32 live plants.
In the report, Rickards told the deputy that he had “religious right to my plants,” and “I have a spiritual and constitutional right to have my plants.”
Rickards also requested that police take his marijuana plants to the jail with him where he could take care of them on the roof so they wouldn’t die, according to the report. However, Deputy Guy Joslin told Rickards that his job was to seize the illegal plants and that he could not allow the plants to be alive.
After being arrested and hearing his Miranda Rights, Rickards told officers that his plants were sacramental and that it was his religion as well as it had medicinal purposes.
Deputies searched Rickard’s entire house and found 98 large Ball Mason jars with unpackaged marijuana, an electronic vaporizer, 22 marijuana plants, and grow lights, according to the report.
After going to the jail, Rickards explained to Joslin the difference between Cannabis Indica and Sativa and why he preferred Sativa because the “properties were more agreeable to him.” Joslin told Rickards that he was impressed with apparent quality of his marijuana, which Rickards responded that he “grew the best.”
According to court online records, he posted a $10,000 bond Tuesday,