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(TampaBay.com (St. Petersburg Tim)   If you grow anything with hydroponics in Florida the police will automatically assume you are growing pot and come kick down your door without a warrant   (tampabay.com) divider line 166
    More: Florida, Pinellas, marijuana growers, Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, search warrants  
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16239 clicks; posted to Main » on 04 Dec 2011 at 9:13 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2011-12-04 06:44:07 AM
That wouldn't surprise me at all. Back in the 70s-80s in Lane County, Oregon it wasn't uncommon to get a visit from the police if you bought grow lights using a credit card. It was pretty much a logical assumption that you were buying the lights to aid in growing marijuana plants.

At one point there was even talk about making it illegal to sell grow lamps, even though such lamps are used to grow legal plants indoors too. Thankfully cooler heads prevailed and the legislation went nowhere.
 
2011-12-04 08:01:11 AM
I've considered getting lights like this for my houseplants because they don't get much light in the winter. Florida gets more sun than Seattle so I don't understand the need for grow lights there, but he certainly doesn't deserve to get his door kicked in for buying one.
 
2011-12-04 08:13:02 AM
I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.
 
2011-12-04 08:23:00 AM

AbbeySomeone: Florida gets more sun than Seattle so I don't understand the need for grow lights there


the sun only shines outside

foreclosed homes + grow lights = $$$

it's silly stupid how many grow houses there are down here!
 
2011-12-04 08:59:38 AM

R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.


This is why i only smoke tobacco from a bong now.

Gonna get paid!

Coughcough
 
2011-12-04 09:19:28 AM
Buy lights, store in house, wait for cops to do something illegal to you, sue, profit! Who says there are no jobs out there?!
 
2011-12-04 09:19:57 AM
Unintended consequence: More grow ops right on the border.
 
2011-12-04 09:21:10 AM
But he *was* growing marijuana. The found one plant. Not exactly drug cartel scale, but still...
 
2011-12-04 09:23:55 AM
I used grow lights in the basement next to a window which didn't have blinds for 4 years (*just put up shades because it's now a work-out space and I can't scare the neighbors).


...Still waiting for my free lawsuit money.



/...Still waiting for that illegal warrantless-search
 
2011-12-04 09:24:17 AM
I have one of these (new window) that I use to grow herbs for my kitchen (no, really) so it's a good thing I dont live in Florida.

/one of many reasons, really
 
2011-12-04 09:24:36 AM

AbbeySomeone: I've considered getting lights like this for my houseplants because they don't get much light in the winter. Florida gets more sun than Seattle so I don't understand the need for grow lights there, but he certainly doesn't deserve to get his door kicked in for buying one.


Yes. This excuse. No.... really!

/actually might buy one for the wife's elephant ear plant which thrived when it was outside, now, not so much
 
2011-12-04 09:24:56 AM

BokerBill: But he *was* growing marijuana. The found one plant. Not exactly drug cartel scale, but still...


Yeah, that was nice and buried in the article. And he blamed it on some nebulous relative who may or may not have lived there.
 
2011-12-04 09:24:59 AM
Legalize it.

I have no interest in weed, personally, but I do wish the cops would use all the money they waste on these raids to catch REAL criminals. Maybe process some rape kits and DNA tests.

Too logical?
 
2011-12-04 09:25:42 AM
Ya know, Epoct has a rather large hydroponic grow operation... when is the big black rat gonna get busted?
 
2011-12-04 09:26:14 AM

oukewldave: Buy lights, store in house, wait for cops to do something illegal to you, sue, profit! Who says there are no jobs out there?!


That's the thing though, worst case scenario they bust into a house with no weed growing. They say oops, sorry wrong house and there's a good chance nobody even hears about the whole thing.

Why hasn't someone gone and vandalized the camera?

I've also heard this about Gardener's Edge in Gainesville, which is farking nuts. Grannies go in there to buy hydro kits for their tomatoes (or weed, but they're grannies, whatever let them) and people are always in there buying regular garden supplies.

Such a waste of money. We are in a recession, let's fire some cops.
 
2011-12-04 09:27:28 AM
This... is excessive.
 
2011-12-04 09:33:54 AM
Big Pharm wins and your freedom looses in FLA.

/really everywhere in America
 
2011-12-04 09:36:25 AM
But,...but....but.... it's for your own protection.
 
2011-12-04 09:41:07 AM
My 17 year old son does not smoke. (We talk about pot frequently and he knows that I wouldn't freak out about it if he told me he smoked. He says he wants to try it but hasn't and I have some good reasons to believe him.)

His main interest is in using hydroponics to attempt to make nutritious food available in urban blight areas.
He's trying to learn as much as he can about hydroponics and wants to build a small scale experiment in our home.

We live in Florida.

Won't it be fun when the cops bust in and find nothing but a criminally messy bedroom and a bunch of hydroponic equipment jury rigged into a tomato growing station?
 
2011-12-04 09:44:15 AM
If you grow anything with hydroponics in Florida live in America the police will automatically assume you are growing pot and come kick down your door without a warrant
 
2011-12-04 09:45:21 AM

Mad Scientist: I have one of these (new window) that I use to grow herbs for my kitchen (no, really) so it's a good thing I dont live in Florida.

/one of many reasons, really


You can't really grow cannabis in one of those though.
 
2011-12-04 09:47:53 AM

R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.


I've thought about converting my garage into a winter vegetable garden. I love fresh veggies, and with crazy gas and grocery prices going up, up, up, home gardening year round seems like the way to go.

I don't because I am concerned the police would "find" pot in my garden, even though no one who lives here has smoked in decades.
 
2011-12-04 09:51:50 AM
Gee. Hard Drive was erased. How convenient.

Note to self: Always store backups offsite.
 
2011-12-04 09:52:13 AM

namegoeshere: R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.

I've thought about converting my garage into a winter vegetable garden. I love fresh veggies, and with crazy gas and grocery prices going up, up, up, home gardening year round seems like the way to go.

I don't because I am concerned the police would "find" pot in my garden, even though no one who lives here has smoked in decades.


Or, a dispute with your neighbor can get the SWAT called on you.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2011-12-04 09:52:17 AM
Any of you who try to bait the police into a raid should also arrange complete video coverage of your property with live streaming to off site backups.
 
2011-12-04 09:57:35 AM
Yet small government Republicans don't see a problem with these kind of tactics.
 
2011-12-04 09:58:19 AM

AbbeySomeone: namegoeshere: R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.

I've thought about converting my garage into a winter vegetable garden. I love fresh veggies, and with crazy gas and grocery prices going up, up, up, home gardening year round seems like the way to go.

I don't because I am concerned the police would "find" pot in my garden, even though no one who lives here has smoked in decades.

Or, a dispute with your neighbor can get the SWAT called on you.


True. although to be fair, you could be SWATted (pops) for telling the tech literate 12 year old next door to get off your lawn.
 
2011-12-04 09:58:31 AM
ZAZ: Any of you who try to bait the police into a raid should also arrange complete video coverage of your property with live streaming to off site backups.

This.
 
2011-12-04 10:00:08 AM
FTFA:

Law enforcement officers commonly use the smell of marijuana to establish probable cause.

Yep. If you want, you can bust down doors and then claim later that you smelled weed. Who's going to prove you wrong?
 
2011-12-04 10:00:42 AM

dennysgod: Yet small government Republicans don't see a problem with these kind of tactics.


Weird, it is Obama's admin that is defending warrant-less GPS trackers being put on your car in your driveway.....
 
2011-12-04 10:01:14 AM

dennysgod: Yet small government Republicans don't see a problem with these kind of tactics.


Of course not. They are the totalitarian authorative party. Even Bush said he didn't mind breaking the constitution, if the GOP were to profit from it.
 
2011-12-04 10:01:34 AM
Theophilopoulos, Underwood's attorney, filed an internal affairs complaint with the Sheriff's Office alleging impropriety by deputies, including trespassing, dishonesty in their search warrant request and erasure of Underwood's DVR hard drive, which was connected to a home surveillance camera.

Nice touch.
 
2011-12-04 10:02:22 AM
What if they use Amazon or another online source? Then no tax money to help pay for the police and their stupid camera...granted it would not help that guys local business. Maybe citizens could install their own camera on the hydroponics store and see if any police/lawyers/judges shop there, since supposedly people that shop there are drug dealers.

I think it would be cool to use hydroponics to grow green tea plants
 
2011-12-04 10:04:01 AM
This is law enforecement in Florida. Easy way to arrest and hassle people while the real crime which takes brains and effort goes unsolved....
 
2011-12-04 10:06:35 AM

BokerBill: But he *was* growing marijuana. The found one plant. Not exactly drug cartel scale, but still...


The real point is that the cops didn't have a warrant or even probable cause. The article cites a professor who says that there's no way you could smell a couple of growing plants from that distance, and the whole "heard the sound of breaking foliage" is an obvious crock of shiat.

So if you buy hydroponic supplies, police can just slap cuffs on you and fabricate a search warrant application.

Look, the Fourth Amendment requirement or a warrant or probable cause means that sometimes people will get away with crimes. The alternative is that the police can just let themselves into your house and look for something bad on nothing more than a hunch or a personal vendetta. So just because the cops ended up finding a plant doesn't vindicate their disregard for constitutional standards and the fact that they lied their asses off to get the search warrant.
 
2011-12-04 10:06:43 AM

Boddhisatva: Theophilopoulos, Underwood's attorney, filed an internal affairs complaint with the Sheriff's Office alleging impropriety by deputies, including trespassing, dishonesty in their search warrant request and erasure of Underwood's DVR hard drive, which was connected to a home surveillance camera.

Nice touch.


Amateurs. They should have just taken his equipment as 'evidence'.
 
2011-12-04 10:08:43 AM
Guess which lucky sheriff is getting an Aerogarden delivered to his office for lulz.
 
2011-12-04 10:10:08 AM

R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.


Not a bad idea, but keep in mind the small but non-zero chance that they will shoot your ass dead coming through the door, regardless of what you do.
 
2011-12-04 10:11:41 AM
What do you know. My post in the other Florida thread applies even more to this thread.

Just stay the fark away from the south. As america becomes more and more nazi like do you really think it's smart to live in the more reactionary areas of the country.
 
2011-12-04 10:11:54 AM
Got someone you don't like? Really don't like?

1. Make a fake license plate with your target's numbers, obtain a similar car, mount the plate down the block from the hydroponics store, let it be observed by the MFPD.

2. ???

3. Profit!!!

The police say they check other things like power usage. This is a good way to find out.
 
2011-12-04 10:12:59 AM
The dumbest thing about the whole situation?

It's marijuana. So farking what. This is what we pay police to do while actual crimes go unsolved?

/I don't smoke
 
2011-12-04 10:13:23 AM
Before I ended up on 2 years of almost continuous travel, I had about 7 different planted tanks running.

i9.photobucket.com

I kept waiting for Fairfax county to show up due to either the power bills, or the IR signature from all the grow lights and bulk nutrient orders.

I was kind of sad that they never did though.
 
2011-12-04 10:14:23 AM

Thunderpipes: dennysgod: Yet small government Republicans don't see a problem with these kind of tactics.

Weird, it is Obama's admin that is defending warrant-less GPS trackers being put on your car in your driveway.....


WHAT??????

Bro, You have news articles proving this?
 
2011-12-04 10:14:44 AM
FTFA: "Later, in a search warrant affidavit, detectives wrote that after Ray closed the door, they smelled growing marijuana and heard "the distinct sound of foliage being broken" - though experts consulted by the Times said marijuana plants are pliable and would only make a sound similar to a tomato plant being broken."

I can't stand it. The very BALLS of these bastards in the way they just make shiat up when a citizen exercises his rights. What utter bullshiat.
 
2011-12-04 10:15:58 AM

Bob16: What do you know. My post in the other Florida thread applies even more to this thread.

Just stay the fark away from the south. As america becomes more and more nazi like do you really think it's smart to live in the more reactionary areas of the country.


Pinellas County is not Tupelo, Mississippi. It's part of the Tampa metro area and diverse and mostly urban.

And there's nothing uniquely southern about this kind of police work. It happens all over. In Hartford, Connecticut the police have a paragraph which they copy-and-paste in their police reports to explain that they are trained to know what marijuana smells like, and they smelled marijuan,a and that's why they didn't need a warrant to force their way in and arrest Suspect X.
 
2011-12-04 10:16:55 AM
You know what else is used almost universally by marijuana growers?

Shoes.

That's right: Shoes

And you know else else wore shoes?

That's right. HITLER
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2011-12-04 10:17:07 AM
OhioUGrad: What if they use Amazon or another online source?

In the long term states want Amazon to report every purchase. In theory they want Amazon to collect sales tax. If we're lucky there will be a compromise and Amazon will collect sales without revealing what you bought. If we're unlucky Amazon will report every purchase back as far as the statute of limitations goes and tax authorities will share suspicious, interesting, or subversive purchases with other agencies.
 
2011-12-04 10:17:41 AM

Boddhisatva: Theophilopoulos, Underwood's attorney, filed an internal affairs complaint with the Sheriff's Office alleging impropriety by deputies, including trespassing, dishonesty in their search warrant request and erasure of Underwood's DVR hard drive, which was connected to a home surveillance camera.

Nice touch.


Dishonesty? By the police? The hell you say.
 
2011-12-04 10:18:14 AM
Look, the cops get to keep everything they steal during a drug bust, whether there's drugs there or not. So why NOT go after businesses? They've got cash, computers, copiers, office equipment, cars, etc. etc. It's a pretty sweet haul for just a few hours of thievery.
 
2011-12-04 10:18:35 AM

R.A.Danny: I've considered buying grow lights and leaving them boxed in my basement in hopes of filing a lawsuit one day.


You live in a red state ?

Up here in the liberal northeast i know people that have their lights sent right to the address they grow at. Granted they are grow cabinets and hot grow rooms but in a red state you'd get farked if they caught you with a cab.

Was in traffic court a few years back and the kid in front of me had been caught with a bag of weed and the judge said don't do it again and get out of my court. No fine no nothing.
 
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