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INDIANAPOLIS – Jeff Staker knows the new battle that lies ahead.

The Indiana Marine veteran has registered a nonprofit with the state, Hoosier Veterans for Medical Cannabis, and said he is committed to pushing Indiana lawmakers to legalize medical marijuana.

“There needs to be an alternative,” Staker said.

It’s in part his first-hand account of prescribing practices, with doctors in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Staker said that is promoting the new action.

“For me personally, it’s because for the past 10 years I’ve been on pain medication of one sort or another,” he said. “And a majority of that I was on oxycodone.”

The concern has been profiled locally and nationally, when late last year agents with the Drug Enforcement Agency looked into prescribing practices at the Marion VA, and questions about why that facility has ordered more narcotics and opioids than any other facility in northern Indiana.

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