The Brooks County Sheriff's Department has a marijuana problem. They've got 200,000 pounds of pot, and they're complaining that it would be too expensive to destroy it.
"This is a problem that doesn't seem to be going away and anything we can get to help us to dispose of these cases once they're done and to get ready for the next one that are coming in would be a great help," said Deputy Daniel Davila.
Something tells me Toke of the Town readers could be of great assistance to the deputy. After all, at a trying time like this, we all have to pitch in, people!
All of the confiscated cannabis comes from drug cases over the past decade, reports Manuel De La Rosa at KIII-TV. And for now, all that unwanted weed sits in some storage trailers, awaiting an uncertain fate.
The marijuana dates back as far as 2000. According to authorities, the previous sheriff either didn't keep good records, or didn't get destruction orders from judges.
It's a priority for the current sheriff to get rid of the hundreds of thousands of pounds of pot. Deputies destroyed some of the bundles of bud with two visits to the Department of Public Safety incinerator in McAllen, Texas last year, but it cost them nearly $30,000.
The problem seems to be unwrapping the plastic off the marijuana, commonly used by Mexican drug smugglers, and Brooks County just doesn't have the manpower to do that. The county has a small sheriff's department, with only seven patrol officers and one criminal investigator.
"(It's) very time consuming," Deputy Davila said. "Probably for preparation to get it ready a week or more, whatever trailers we are going to use to transport it up there, and it would take several officers especially to remove the plastic from the contraband."
Just for the past 16 months, Brooks County has started keeping more marijuana seized from cases under Sheriff Rey Rodriguez. Already, they've filled two trailers with pot.
The problem is, the dank deluge continues; the cannabis cases keep coming in, and the weed just stacks up higher and higher.
The only place deputies can currently destroy the pot is at the DPS Lab in McAllen, but plans are afoot to pool resources in the Coastal Bend to destroy the weed locally.
County officials believe that would be less costly and might solve their marijuana storage problems.
By Steve Elliott
May 4, 2010
Toke of the Town