|Photo: Event Setter
Shock waves are still reverberating through the medical marijuana community after more than half-a-dozen growing operations were raided by the Colorado Springs Metro Vice unit on Wednesday.
Police served seven warrants, claiming they were all illegal growing operations, reports 11 News.
All seven were growing operations and not storefront dispensaries, according to police spokesman Sgt. Steve Noblitt.
Police said they seized evidence of what they claim is illegally grown marijuana, and will be turning the evidence over to the District Attorney’s office. Authorities said they are also investigating if and how the grow operations might be connected to dispensaries.
No arrests were made, according to Sgt. B. Poole of the region’s Metro Vice, Narcotics and Intelligence Squad, reports Joel Millman at the The Colorado Springs Gazette.
“People are concerned if they’re going to be next to be raided, if their doors are going to be kicked in in the middle of the night, that type of thing,” said Clifton Black, a Colorado Springs attorney who said none of his existing clients were targeted by the searches.
“They’re worried about their patients, if they’re going to be able to provide medicine to the patients,” Black said.
The raids were conducted one day after the Colorado Legislature gave its final approval to a bill regulating medical marijuana dispensaries in the state. Police claim the timing was a coincidence and that the searches had nothing to do with the bill’s passage into law.
Tanya Garduno, president of the Colorado Springs Medical Cannabis Council, said she suspected 4th Judicial District Attorney Dan May, a vocal critic of dispensaries, had a hand in the searches being conducted so soon after lawmakers approved the new rules.
“It was all pretty ridiculous,” one dispensary owner said. “There were 60 plants there and I think they thought they were going to find thousands. The sergeant in charge let it slip that Dan May had pushed for the searches.”
Spokeswoman Kathleen Walsh denied that District Attorney May played a role in the searches, claiming the D.A.’s office only becomes involved if someone is arrested.