Criminal Justice

Thanks to Jailhouse Yoga, Defendant Says He Has Walked Away From Medical Marijuana


Once a man who admittedly lived life in a haze of marijuana, a defendant who says he turned his life around in a Colorado jail through the practice of yoga over a three-month period has persuaded a judge to give him a significant sentencing break.

Although he was already on probation for a prior offense, Vaughn Barnett got only 30 more days, in addition to the 130 he has already served in Pitkin County Jail. After his release he will be allowed to move to New Jersey to live with his mother, in the hope that he will continue on the right path there, the Aspen Times reports.

The yoga classes for inmates at the jail in Aspen have been the butt of jokes, but public defender Tina Fang told Judge Gail Nichols yesterday that they paid off for her client, helping Barnett clear his head and purge his mind.

“I feel yoga classes in jail are an absolute genius,” Barnett told the judge. He pleaded guilty to intent to distribute marijuana after authorities accused him and a roommate of arranging to mail an 11-pound package of pot to a post office in Snowmass in 2010.

In an interview last year, Barnett told the newspaper he was a licensed distributor of medical marijuana and said the package contained “trim from a legal marijuana grow in California.”

In court yesterday he said he had walked away from the medical marijuana industry.

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