Police confiscate 200+ marijuana plants in Montcalm County drug bust


By Elisabeth Waldon • Last Updated 11:34 am on Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A coordinated police effort on Monday resulted in the confiscation of more than 200 marijuana plants from multiple locations throughout Montcalm County.

The Central Michigan Enforcement Team (CMET) conducted domestic cannabis eradication and suppression program flights, or “Operation HEMP,” which stands for “Help Eradicate Marijuana Plantings.” The program is federally funded and is designed to eradicate illegally outdoor marijuana plantings.

According to CMET Det. Lt. Joel Abendroth, officers eradicated more than 200 marijuana plants from multiple locations throughout Montcalm County. Officers also uncovered six outdoor medical marijuana grow operations, which were found to be in violation and non-compliant with the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act.

No one was arrested and the investigations continue.

CMET was assisted by the Montcalm County Sheriff’s Department, the Greenville Department of Public Safety, the Edmore Police Department, the Howard City Police Department, the Lakeview Police Department, the Carson City Police Department, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post.

Edmore Police Chief Luke Sawyer posted an update about the drug bust on the Edmore Police Department’s Facebook page Monday night.

“It has been a long 15-hour day,” he wrote. “I was honored to be part of a multi-department marijuana eradication detail in Montcalm County. We confiscated a lot of marijuana plants that would have ended up on the streets. I’m not sure we can ever eliminate drugs, but I’m crazy enough to try.”

Statewide, the program during this year’s grow season has seized more than 9,700 plants, arrested 127 people and seized 270 weapons and $421,794 in assets. The flights will continue across the state through September.

CMET is a multi jurisdictional drug enforcement team that investigates crime in Ionia, Montcalm, Mecosta and Newaygo counties with officers from the Ionia County Sheriff’s Department, Montcalm County Sheriff’s Department, Newaygo County Sheriff’s Department, Mecosta County Sheriff’s Department, Big Rapids Department of Public Safety and the Michigan State Police.

Anyone with information reference marijuana grow operations or any controlled substance can contact CMET at 1-800-342-0404.

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