It's that time of year again: harvest season. And while it means a stony winter is ahead for many, it also means a season of increased paranoia as the buzzing of helicopters overhead has hundreds if not thousands of marijuana growers in the United States scared they are the next to be busted.
Already, stories are coming in from all over about police buzzing fields to find pot then raiding the homes below. Police in Indiana, for example, are bragging about a $75,000 harvest they raided Thursday.
Cops say they were doing a "routine flyover" (read: a pilot wasting taxdollars spying on American citizens by air hoping to find a crime in progress) when they spotted a crop of about 90 plants on a Sullivan County farm. After getting a warrant, troopers raided the property and found those plants along with eight pounds of pot. In total, they valued it at $75 grand.
But we're wondering how much the whole operation cost taxpayers. All of those cops and pilot salaries, not to mention fuel for the helicopter seems like it could easily cost about $75,000 for an operation like this.
Essentially, did they waste more money on this than the entire operation was worth?
Probably. Cops love to do that then brag about it.
Charles Beaver was arrested on site, charged with marijuana cultivation, possession of marijuana and "maintaining a common nuisance". We would wager that choppers buzzing over the heads of landowners is more of a nuisance, but whatever.
Beaver is currently in jail on a $28,000 bond. He faces anywhere from six months to three years and $10,000 for each of the three felonies he is charged with.
Police in Saginaw, Michigan this week also made a bust in a local cornfield - a paltry 47 plants valued at $23,000. Cops there say they've been doing flyovers this time of year for as long as they can remember. Thankfully, nobody was arrested in that bust and cops say it was likely some guerrilla growers.
Cops in Michigan use seized assets and funds to pay for their flyover operations. So, basically they create criminals out of people to help pay for their salaries and conduct annual roundups to keep the funds coming in.