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08-19-07, 03:25 AM #1
Police confiscate $10 million worth of pot from an outdoor growth operation, which was tapped into the city water tank, used to put out fires
Glendale police confiscated $10 million worth of marijuana from a sophisticated outdoor growing operation in the Verdugo Mountains that tapped into a city water tank designated for emergency use during brush fires.
The growers watered their crops by illegally hooking a drip-irrigation system into a 10,000-gallon cistern in themountains, which are prone to summer and fall brush fires. Glendale fire officials said half of the water tank had been drained.
Ironically, the region's record dry weather and drought conditions led to the discovery of the pot operation.
A helicopter pilot making a routine inspection for possible fires during the red-flag conditions saw the lush, green pot plants against the brown, shriveled brush.
"He noticed a patch of green that stood out from everything else," said John Balian, a Glendale police spokesman.
The more than 5,000 marijuana plants were discovered throughout several ravines on the north side of the mountains.The use of water that was reserved for firefighters outraged both Glendale officials and residents, who said they were thankful that the chopper pilot found the farm before the tank had been emptied.
"We are in such a threat with the weather like this," said Krista Anderson, 43, who lives on the top of the fire trail that leads into the hillside brush. "Any fire up here will come straight for us. Without water, what will we do?"
Police said the farm was spread across two to three acres and was two years old.
Seizure of a large outdoor crop is unusual, officials said, as many growers have moved their operations indoors to avoid detection.
During the last year, local authorities, primarily in the San Gabriel Valley, have confiscated millions of dollars worth of marijuana plants from more than a dozen suburban homes that were doubling as hollowed-out greenhouses.
With the help of technology, growers have created multiple, year-round growing cycles by purchasing expensive equipment, including hydroponic watering systems and timed lighting and venting systems.
They also illegally tap into the power system to avoid arousing the suspicion of police and power companies, which might otherwise notice astronomical utility bills.
In contrast, the Glendale growers decided to stay outdoors and tap the public water supply.
The 10,000-gallon cistern is one of several in the Verdugo Mountains that firefighters use, said Steve Howard, deputy chief of operations at the Glendale Fire Department.
The partially buried tanks are near fire roads and primarily are used for mop-up operations.
"We count on those cisterns to get at hot spots," Howard said.
Capt. Tom Probst said the lids of the concrete water cisterns are inspected for signs of tampering just before each summer fire season.
There were several groves of marijuana plants a quarter of a mile to half a mile away from the tapped cistern, about three-quarters up the mountainside far from any roads, Probst said.
The nearest hillside homes are a mile from the farms.
"They must have walked or biked or rode motorcycles to get up there," Probst said. "There was no way to get a car up there."
Police also found evidence that the pot farmers had been guarding their crop.
They recovered sleeping bags and found trash hung in trees to avoid attracting animals.
Sniper rifles with scopes and live ammunition also were discovered.
"It's a bit disturbing, knowing that this is going on near where my family lives," said Nathan Enson, 26, of Glendale. "There were guys with guns up there -- I hike on those hills."
After discovering the stash Tuesday, more than three dozen law enforcement officers spent Wednesday night on the mountain as they prepared the marijuana plants, some 5 feet tall, for removal.
By late Thursday morning, a helicopter had hauled 18 loads down the mountain to the Crescenta Valley County Park parking lot, where they were taken to an undisclosed location to be destroyed.
08-19-07, 01:15 PM #2
Glad there wasn't a wildfire, you never could have fed all the hosedraggers afterwards.
"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
- Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America
Tell me not, Sweet, I am unkind,
That from the nunnery
Of thy chaste breast and quiet mind
To war and arms I fly. - Lovelace
The opinions expressed by this poster are wholly his own, and should never be construed to even remotely be in representation of his employer, its agencies or assigns. In fact, they probably fail to be in alignment with the opinions of any rational human being.
08-20-07, 12:43 AM #3
Damn dopers steal anything.Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never, ever the same.-- Anonymous
Old People, like me, may not be around to witness the destruction of our Nation. The rest of you may not survive the collapse. We all have the sworn duty to prevent it.
The light of hope burns brighter than the fires of doom.
08-20-07, 12:48 AM #4
they wouldn't have been put in that position if marijuana was legalized.
"A strong man stands up for himself. A stronger man stands up for others."
The old sheriff was attending an awards dinner when a lady commented
on his wearing his sidearm. "Sheriff, I see you have your pistol. Are you
expecting trouble?" "No Ma'am. If I were expecting trouble, I would have
brought my rifle."
(just stole this one hope you don't mind)
The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant,
it is just that they know so much that isn't so.
President Ronald Reagan
08-20-07, 01:01 AM #5
08-20-07, 02:32 AM #6
nice popYEAH, IM THE BERRIES, AND CHERRIES IN YOUR REAR VIEW MIRROR.
Handle every stressful situation like a dog.
Eat it, Play with it, or piss on it, and walk away!
As smart as man is, we haven't been able to invent a machine that can smell drugs or tell us where a person has walked,” Dogs are sophisticated investigative tools!
08-20-07, 03:00 AM #7
When I was in the Marine Reserves, I worked that area as part of Joint Task Force Six looking for gardens above Pasadena, San Gabriel, Arcadia, etc.
I was surprised how elaborate these gardens were. All the gardens we ran across were being maintained by mexican illegal aliens for the Mexican Mafia. I sat in on a number of the interrogations/de-briefings afterwards.
California has since "kicked" out JTF6 and is running the counterdrug program through the national guard.politics again rearing its ugly head.
Searching for Evil and the Perfect donut (Love that book)
"It's not who you are underneath, but what you do that defines you"
There are gains for all our losses
There are balms for all our pain
But, when youth, the dream, departs
It takes something from our hearts
And it never comes again
"Captain, it is I Ensign Pulver. I just threw your damn palm tree overboard. Now, what's all this crap about no movie tonight?" -Ens Pulver in Mister Roberts
The man who will go where his colors go, without asking who will fight a phantom foe in the jungle and mountain range, without counting, and who will suffer and die in the midst of incredible hardship, without complaint, is still what he has always been, from Imperial Rome to sceptered Britain to democratic America. He is the stuff of which legions are made. ...His pride is in his colors and his regiment, his training hard and thorough and coldly realistic, to fit him for what he must face...and his obedience is to his orders. He has been called United State Marine.
T.R. Fehrenbach, This Kind of War
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