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Deputy busts pot-growing operation in northwestern Minnesota

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

BEMIDJI -- A Beltrami County Sheriff’s Deputy busted a marijuana growing operation on Friday in rural Turtle River Township.

On Friday, at 4:15 p.m., a Beltrami County Deputy was investigating the theft of a motor vehicle, and the investigation brought him to a residence on the 5600 block of Pincherry Road Northeast in rural Turtle River Township, approximately 3.5 miles east of Bemidji, according to a release from Chief Deputy Ernie Beitel.

While at the residence, the deputy observed what appeared to be a large number of marijuana plants that had recently been harvested, the release said. The deputy made contact with the homeowner while the man was in the process of harvesting a backyard grow operation.

The homeowner, a 66-year-old man, was taken into custody, the release said. With the assistance of agents from the Paul Bunyan Drug Task Force, a search warrant was executed at the residence that resulted in the seizure of a large number of marijuana plants in various stages of processing, the release said.

Marijuana was found in almost every room of the residence and the plants varied in size of 4-9 feet in height; also located with the marijuana were several loaded firearms, which included assault-type rifles, shotguns, and black powder rifles, the release said.

The exact weight of the marijuana has yet to be determined. The man was released from custody pending formal criminal charges.

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