67-year-old grandmother Alberta Kelley of Connellsville, Pennsylvania – charged with growing cannabis from seeds she said she was given by a man dressed as a “Smurf” – was found not guilty last week by a jury who believed Kelley’s claim that she had no idea the plants were pot. Rather, Kelley said the Smurf-Man told her that the gifted seeds would yield the “prettiest flowers she has ever seen.”
The stranger allegedly donned a white “Smurf hat” favored by the blue-skinned characters from the 1980’s hit animated NBC series that combined mild humor with sword and sorcery adventure. After Kelley planted the “pretty flower seeds,” she told Channel 4 Action News that she was waiting for the flowers to bloom, but didn’t recognize that it was marijuana buds that were actually growing; she claims she just thought they were weeds.
In January 2011 Kelley was busted after Connelllsville PD has previously received an anonymous tip and discovered seven pot plants nestled amongst the tomato plants growing in her garden back in July 2010. After confiscating 138 grams of pot, the police were legally obligated to arrest her and file felony charges. But the jury bought Kelley’s story during her two-day trial and today she is a free woman.
The Smurfs were originally created way back in the late 1950’s by the Belgian artist Peyo, inspired by a pseudo-language Peyo and a colleague fashioned as a joke, so it’s perhaps fitting that this improbable story of being handed pot seeds by some guy dressed as a Smurf can get a grandmother acquitted of growing weed when all the evidence was seemingly against the woman. Maybe this case will inspire future law school classes to hold symposiums debating the pros and cons of the “Papa Smurf Defense.”