Lake Stevens Police bust four different
marijuana growing operations
Many feel that marijuana is not as dangerous as many other illegal drugs out there. However, after a double homicide in Everett last July at a marijuana home grow operation, we were reminded of how dangerous all types of illegal drugs can be.
“As with any drugs it brings crime, theft and irradict behavior,” Lake Stevens Chief of Police Randy Celori said.
Officers in Lake Stevens were able to recover tens of thousands of dollars worth of drugs and take it off of the streets.
In February of 2006 officers were patrolling the area around the 2400 block of Cedar Road and again in August of 2007 in the Frontier Village area
“We discovered two home growing operations by officers driving by with their windows down,” Celori said. “They usually vent at night.”
After knocking on the door several times at the Cedar Road home the owner opened the door and talked to the officers. The officers asked the owner to sign a “consent to search” form”, which he did. They quickly discovered 10 marijuana plants and tools used for growing the plants in a small room which was built into the garage.
The man told the officers that he needed the marijuana for medical reasons.
The plants were gathered by officers and taken into evidence and all of the information forwarded to the County Prosecutor.
After a call regarding a barking dog, officers found a home with its windows boarded up in the Frontier Village area. This can be a tell-tale sign of a home growing operation. After some investigation the officers were able to seize over 60 plants being cultivated in the home. This incident is still under investigation.
In November of last year police were called to the home of a 37-year-old resident on Spring Brook Road who had passed away.
While investigating the nature of the death, which later turned out to be an accidental overdose of prescription drugs, officers found a makeshift wooden door in the garage.
After hearing a fan running on the other side of the wall and finding a ladder and pruning shears nearby, the officers opened the door and found an indoor marijuana grow.
This seizure included 47 marijuana plants and 14 gallon sized plastic bags of processed marijuana. Weapons were also recovered at the scene.
There was information given to Lake Stevens Police regarding a home on Catherine Creek. After following up on the information, police were able to stop yet another home growing business in the city where they were able to seize marijuana plants plus several weapons and other drug paraphernalia.
.”After receiving a tip, we found approximately 60 plants in various stages of growth,” Celori said. “After receiving the information we see if they’re using an exorbitant amount of power.”
The suspect was taken into custody and the case is still pending.
Before entering a home on suspicion of drugs have to get a search warrant, which was done in all of the above cases.
“Some of the ways to get justification for a search warrant is first to make sure information given is reliable,” Celori said.
Checking PUD electric bills and looking for horticulture supplies outside can establish probable cause.
Often the Lake Stevens Police will call in the Drug Task Force for back up on most of its drug related cases to help cease evidence and to break down the lab.
“They have been a great asset to have available to use,” Celori said. “We don’t have the facilities to deal with all of the equipment and large amounts of marijuana.”
He is also certain that his team of trained officers will discover other home grow operations if they exist in Lake Stevens.
“I am confident there are more we will locate in the future,” he said.