Judge Wynn Morgan bans man from shed.
By James Collins
Simon Redclift can no longer go in his own shed. There isn’t an angry badger in there, or a particularly aggressive spider of some exotic variety. It is a condition of his bail that he may no longer frequent his own garden shed.
After all, he did smoke cannabis in there.
53 year old anxiety sufferer Simon Redclift was arrested for cultivation of cannabis. Police raided the aforementioned shed and found five mature cannabis plants, along with about thirty assorted saplings that weren’t anywhere near the hope of getting anyone high. They might as well have been dandelions, but none-the-less found their way into the absurd police valuation of some 22,000 pounds. Perhaps they were including the retail price of the hemp ponchos this unrepentant hippy might have made from the stalks.
So was Simon the neighborhood drug kingpin? Was he supplying school children with his mind-altering psychoactive murder-weed? Was he driving around town in a Bentley shooting in the air from his gold-plated handgun in all his stoner glory?
No. Simon likes to do some light woodworking and watch Blue Planet on DVD in this nefarious shed of ill-repute. He has a small wood-burning stove in there to keep warm; the entire space is 10’ by 12’. The rest of his family sometimes uses it as well, although there is no indication they joined him when he hotboxed Satan’s hopper house and crafted tools of defilement out of scrap wood.
I could understand bulldozing Lucifer’s Tool Shed if he was in there watching Cheech & Chong, but really, Blue Planet?
An interesting side note, Simon had moved his pot smoking out to the shed in order to accommodate his wife when she quit smoking. This shed of unspeakable horrors isn’t really a bad thing on the whole; if anything it proves that Simon for whatever shortcomings he might have is actually a really decent guy.
He took his weed and his DVD player out to the garden shed so he wouldn’t bother his family with his cannabis-induced loafing. What more can you ask from a man? Couches all across the UK are occupied by angry, beer-swilling football fans ranting and raving about a goalie while their family tiptoes around them. It seems to me like Simon Redclift may have stumbled onto a whole new paradigm of family living that could be beneficial for all.
Judge Wynn Morgan disagrees, and while Simon is on bail, he has forbidden him from going out to his own shed. Obviously His Worship finds no respite from his own nagging wife in the refuge of a cannabis-filled garden shed, and he isn’t about to let anybody else either. It beats out Judge Lambert and his completely bonkers sentencing where he made a sick man write an essay about the dangers of the cannabis he uses to feel healthier. It’s a new low for the British Courts, and it is starting to look like it could be a trend.
The more Judges, like Judge Wynn Morgan, that get their chubby mugs plastered all over the Daily Mail, the more other Judges are going to make a play for their fifteen minutes of fame by thinking outside the sentencing guidelines and just shooting for the moon. The days of embarrassing sandwich boards on the roadside probably aren’t far away with this latest stunt of judiciary comedy.
On one hand, he kind of got off easy, because that many plants could have gotten him a custodial sentence. On the other hand, what the hell did he do wrong? While technically illegal, is there any more innocuous activity than a middle-aged man smoking a doob and watching Blue Planet? This is worthy of punitive measures from the state?
Creative sentencing approached in a rational way and employed against people with real criminal behaviors to adjust might have a place. These are just silly punishments against people who have done nothing to harm anyone, or impact their community in even the smallest way. I can’t even guess how it is the police came to raid the garden shed of one Simon Redclift in the first place. Unless he has a very nosey neighbor who decided to snitch on him for enjoying himself too much, there is really no reason the police should have befallen the operation at all and no reason why he should have been in front of Judge Wynn Morgan in the first place.
Aside from the resources it took to investigate, arrest, and take this man to court – the state is now on the hook to make sure he doesn’t go in his own shed! How do you enforce this kind of order? It’s like sentencing someone to never wave with their left hand. Are you going to follow them around all day and make sure they don’t do it while nobody is watching? Has Judge Wynn Morgan considered this?
There are limited police resources and real crimes taking place. There is no argument to be made that every violent criminal, every genuine drug pusher selling poison to children, and every corrupt enterprise has already been dealt with. With austerity being the watchword of British politics, is there any equation that manages to turn this entire affair into anything but an embarrassing waste of money and police time?
The point about the shed itself is kind of moot now. Simon’s Seedy Shack of Sensi and Sin has been demolished. It doesn’t hold a lot of sense for him to maintain a garden shed which he is forbidden by the power of law to enter. Congratulations Judge Wynn Morgan, you’re just like a superhero; and British justice takes another giant goose-step to the land beyond the looking-glass.
James Collins is a Canadian blogger, author and activist.