Five hundred mature pots plants were confiscated Tuesday at a site west of Novato by the Marin County Sheriff’s Marijuana Enforcement Team, but no arrests have been made, a sheriff’s spokesman said Wednesday.
Deer hunters spotted the grow site off Nicasio Valley Road and reported it to authorities, resulting in the discovery of plants 6 to 10 feet tall, according to Lt. Barry Heying. The sheriff's office is not pintpointing the location of the pot farm.
With helicopter support from the California Highway Patrol, 20 members of the enforcement team handled the confiscation, which took place between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m., Heying said.
The discovery came one week after 1,600 plants were found near Walker Creek in the same rural West Marin area. About 500 plants had already been harvested from the site, which contained garbage, a fire pit, propane tanks and a chicken pen. Investigators said they were concerned about the open fires taking place during the height of wildland fire season and ecological damage from the waste.
Heying said in a release that marijuana grow operations pose a significant danger to hikers and property owners who might stumble upon illicit gardens that might be protected by armed guards.
Anyone with information about the pot grows, including those who wish to remain anonymous, is urged to share it with sheriff’s deputies by calling 415-499-7233. Anonymous tipsters may call 800-222-TIPS.