Seized Marijuana Plants Number in Thousands


Nearly 4,000 marijuana plants, some nearly 8 feet tall, were harvested from a site near North Park in Wheeling, according to a spokesman for the Ohio Valley Drug and Violent Crime Task Force.

The seizure of 3,850 plants was the largest to occur in Ohio County in recent memory, officers noted.

No arrests have been made and none are expected, officers said late Friday.

Without surveillance, arrests would not be possible, an officer noted.

The plants were discovered by an unidentified individual who apparently stumbled on them recently, task force officers noted. The individual reported the matter to Wheeling Police Department detectives, who verified the information and then reported it to the task force.

“It didn’t appear someone was taking care of them,” a task force officer said Friday afternoon.

He pointed out in other cases, there is evidence of weeds being pulled from around the plants, which are regularly watered and fertilized.

“These were mixed in with the underbrush,” the task force officer said.

The officer declined to give an exact location for where the plants were found.

He noted that in the Eastern Panhandle area, the plants were grown for hemp production. However, over the years, they have begun to grow wild. Just how the plants in North Park came to be there, the officer could not say.

He noted the intoxicating potency of the wild plants is not as strong as in plants grown under controlled conditions.

The plants, which were between 1 foot and 8 feet tall, were buried in a landfill shortly after they were harvested, reports indicate.

The operation included drug task force officers, Ohio and Marshall County sheriffs’ departments, the Wheeling Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Section: News    Posted: 8/12/2006