Lee Sheriff’s operation nets nearly 60 grams of marijuana

Jul. 24, 2013 @ 05:01 AM

The Lee County Sheriff’s Office, with the assistance of the Air National Guard, scoured the county by sky searching for cannabis Tuesday — leading to the seizure of nearly 60 grams of marijuana.

The sheriff’s office checked more than a dozen sites where marijuana was believed to be growing around the county by helicopter in a day-long operation, according to Lt. Bryan Allen. Four plants were found in the southern portion of the county for a 56-gram net, Allen said, adding that charges are pending for at least one suspect.

“It was a successful operation,” Allen said. “We were flying around the county and following up on tips by concerned citizens.”

The sheriff’s office typically searches for marijuana once a year, and the success rate varies, he said.

“In the past, we have found anywhere from seven to 14 plants at a time,” Allen said. “Last year, we didn’t locate anything. So to find anything, especially from the air and when it’s concealed, is decent.”

Air National Guard officers are trained to spot marijuana from the sky by its distinct color, he said, and can differentiate the plant from its surroundings in the forested areas.

The State Bureau of Investigation also assisted with the operation.