Indiana State Police spent the night guarding more than 2,000 marijuana plants in a rural Kosciusko County field Thursday night. Friday, 8 officers dug them up and arrested Mario Camacho and Mariano Gonzalez.
At about 7pm Thursday night State Police officers found two men and a juvenile in the marijuana field. Unfortunately it was so dark that they were not able to remove the plants until Friday morning. Police were not expecting to uncover so many plants and people who live in the area never expected this drug bust either.
"I was in shock when I saw the...in front of my drive you know and I'm like wow this is an off place for a state police to break down," said Barbara Harrison who lives near the drug bust.
And that's when Barbara knew something just wasn't right in her small community in rurual Kosciusko County.
"Then when I got closer to the edge and I saw all the cars down there I said uh oh it's meth something a dead body or something," said Harrison.
But it wasn't. Indiana state police found two-thousand marijuana plants tucked away in a field off county road 500-East in Syracuse. Senior Trooper Chad Larsh says he believes the drug dealers were sleeping in hammocks in the field to protect their valuable crops.
"The street value of this could be anywhere from a thousand dollars to 2500-dollars depending on the quality," said Indiana State Police Senior Trooper Chad Larsh.
Each bundle has about 25 marijuana plants wrapped up, this one's not too big but they can get up to 7 or 10 feet tall."
"This was going to take approximately 90 days at the quickest outdoors or even longer than that if they started the plants from seeds," said Larsh.
Trooper Larsh says that this is third drug bust they've made this month. Generally he says they find more marijuana plants in the summer because it's the perfect season to grow it outdoors
"It's like a full time job," said Larsh. And because some people are just getting desperate. "With the high gas prices people are doing things that maybe they normally wouldn't do to make a quick buck," said Larsh.
Barbara Harrison thinks it happened across the street from her home because it's off the beaten path. "It would be so easy to plant seeds...to have the time to do that," said Harrison.
The two men arrested, both Camacho and Gonzalez have been charged with possession of marijuana and growing marijuana with the intent to sell. They remain in the Kosciusko county jail.
A juvenile was also arrested, but police have not released the minor's name. Those are the main suspects...but police say they believe there's a much bigger story behind this drug bust and expect to arrest more people in the near future.
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