When OG&E shut off electricity to a home she was renting out, an Edmond homeowner went to pay the tenants a visit to find out what was going on. She became concerned when the tenants did not answer her knocks at the door and called police.
Police first tried the front door, and when they couldn't get an answer, either, they went around back. That is where the discovered quite a surprise.
Allegedly, police noticed a ventilation system in the back and observed marijuana plants inside the home.
They returned with a search warrant to the middle-class home in a suburban Edmond neighborhood. Inside, they allegedly discovered one of the largest marijuana grow houses ever found by the Edmond Police Department.
In fact, they found so many marijuana plants in the home that the department didn't have room for all of them, and they had to call in the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs for help.
Police say they found marijuana growing in every room of the 2,043-square-foot home. All together, they say they found 300 to 500 marijuana plants, including a garage full of mature plants reaching up to 8 feet tall.
According to Edmond police spokesperson Jennifer Monroe, OG&E cut off electricity to the home when the electric company became suspicious that tenants were siphoning electricity from neighboring homes. Monroe said investigators believe that when the tenants discovered that they were going to have the electricity shut off, "they just packed up and left."
Oklahoma is not a good place to get caught cultivating marijuana. While a first offense of simple marijuana possession is typically a misdemeanor, virtually every other drug offense in Oklahoma is a felony. This includes cultivation.
In fact, marijuana cultivation is a felony punishable by two years to life in prison, even as a first offense.
In the late 1990's, Will Foster was arrested for cultivating marijuana in a closet in his home. Foster testified that he was growing pot for personal medicinal use, in order to alleviate the pain of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Although prosecutors called his growing system "sophisticated" and said he had the capability of producing enough marijuana for 2,500 joints, an expert witness specializing in marijuana cultivation disputed the claim. Ed Rosenthal testified that Foster's growing area could have only produced 12.5 ounces of "smokable marijuana." Although Foster's attorney argued that his client's crime was only mere possession, Foster was convicted of multiple drug felonies related to marijuana cultivation. He was sentenced to a staggering 93 years in prison.
If you are accused of marijuana possession, distribution, cultivation, or trafficking in Oklahoma, you face some of the toughest penalties in the nation. It is imperative that you get a lawyer as quickly as possible to fight against sentences even the federal government calls "draconian."