Marijuana Raid 05/19/2010
Officers with the Lexington County Multi-Agency Narcotics Enforcement Team (NET) on Wednesday, May 19 seized 94 marijuana plants, with a street value of about $94,000, that were being grown inside a home on Milton Way near Gaston as well as a shed outside the residence.
Lexington County Sheriff James R. Metts said NET officers arrested Roger Jason Graham, 37, of 269 Milton Way, Gaston, at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday on charges that Graham operated a sophisticated hydroponic system to grow marijuana inside the Milton Way residence. The Richland County Sheriff’s Department assisted NET officers in conducting the investigation.
Graham was being held on Thursday, May 20 at the Lexington County Detention Center while awaiting a bond hearing on a charge of manufacturing marijuana, Metts said.
NET officers received information that a hydroponic marijuana growing system was being operated at the Milton Way home, Metts said. Officers went to the home and could detect an odor of marijuana that was emanating from inside the residence.
After executing a search warrant, officers found 13 marijuana plants inside a shed that was outside the Milton Way home, Metts said. The plants had been planted in potting soil and were growing underneath two fluorescent light systems and one Fantech exhaust fan.
Officers also found 20 marijuana plants that were growing inside a closet in Graham’s bedroom at the Milton Way residence, Metts said. Two fluorescent light systems as well as watering and air exhaust systems had been set up in the closet in order to grow the plants.
In addition, officers found 61 marijuana plants that were growing in a cabinet, Metts said. Two fluorescent light systems, an electronic tool that measures acid content in soil, one heat lamp and one Dayton exhaust fan had been set up in the cabinet in order to grow the plants.
Officers seized a Ruger P-345 .45-caliber handgun that they found in Graham’s bedroom as well as a Worm’s Way hydroponic gardening catalog that officers found on a table in the residence’s kitchen, Metts said. In addition, officers seized one marijuana cigarette that was stored in a wooden box, which had the word “Mother” inscribed on its lid. Officers found the wooden box in a bedroom at the residence.
Officers are continuing to investigate information about additional locations in Lexington County where marijuana is being grown.
Citizens who want to anonymously report illegal drug activity can call CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC or call the NET Hotline at (803) 785-8411, Metts said.
NET is comprised of officers from the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department, Batesburg-Leesville Police Department, Cayce Department of Public Safety, Irmo Police Department, Lexington Police Department and South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.
Metts and municipal police chiefs implemented NET in 2001 in order to enhance the enforcement of drug laws across Lexington County.