A 50-year-old Giles County man charged with possession of marijuana for resale stands by his claim he was giving away the drug for medical purposes, not selling it for profit.
Cino Thomas was arrested at his Pulaski home Wednesday after a student was found in possession of medical marijuana candy at a Giles County school on January 16.
Authorities seized 10 pounds of marijuana candy, some of which was labeled "Ghanga Goo" and one pound of marijuana from Thomas' home.
Nashville's News 2 Investigates spoke with Thomas following his arrest. He said he was giving the medical marijuana away to elderly cancer patients, some of which are part of a church group.
"Nobody is helping cancer patients in Tennessee," he explained. "I was too soft hearted, [after] watching one or two [seniors] die. I decided to do something about it. I gave them some medicine, to some cancer patients, to help save their lives."
Police said Thomas received the medical marijuana legally from a dispensary in Michigan and then mailed it to his Tennessee home.
"Yes, unfortunately, I know that is illegal [in Tennessee]. I just couldn't bare the heart of telling those folks no. Just helping some elderly care patients with their conditions, I guess I should have said no."
Upon being told some of the candy, whose packaging warns to keep out of the reach of children, had been allegedly found in the hands of a high school student, Thomas said he was truly sorry.
"That's why it is labeled. It's labeled there is cannabis in it. Honestly, I wasn't thinking about that with the cancer patients," he said.
Authorities, however, disagree.
"If it is for medical purposes, then how did it get to the kids? If it is for medical purposes, maybe that is helpful, but what if it kills a child?" Giles County Sheriff Kyle Helton said.
He was booked into the Giles County jail for possession of a Schedule VI drug for resale.