published Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

Georgia: Pot plants seized in sweep

An agent with the Georgia Governor's Task Force on Drug Suppression chops off the end of a marijuana plant during a raid Tuesday. The task force teamed up with local law enforcement to conduct a marijuana raid in Walker, Catoosa and Dade counties.
An agent with the Georgia Governor's Task Force on Drug Suppression chops off the end of a marijuana plant during a raid Tuesday. The task force teamed up with local law enforcement to conduct a marijuana raid in Walker, Catoosa and Dade counties.
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LaFAYETTE, Ga. — From high above the ground, the sound of a helicopter’s rotors buzz in the distance.

Georgia Governor’s Task Force agents inside the chopper had spotted a row of marijuana plants hidden in a field of corn behind a house in Walker County. Investigators on the ground sped to the house and questioned the owner, Ken Smith. Smith was arrested later Tuesday, accused of growing 21 plants in his backyard.

The marijuana sweep is part of an annual operation where the Governor’s Task Force for Drug Suppression teams up with local law enforcement across the state.

On Tuesday, the operation targeted Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties. Smith, who faces felony charges of manufacturing marijuana, was one of several arrests local law enforcement hoped to make during the sweep.

Lookout Mountain Judicial Drug Task Force Commander Larry Black said the operation is organized locally several times during the summer and local law enforcement are grateful for the help.

“We feel like adjudicating marijuana is just as important as [other drugs],” he said. “It has ties to organized crime.”

The goal of the operation is to find the drug cartels growing large quantities of weed, often on public land, said the Governor’s Task Force commander Lt. Eddie Williams. But if agents spot a small patch, he said, they can’t ignore it.

So far this year, the task force has seized nearly 6,500 marijuana plants, made 48 arrests and seized 41 weapons across the state, Williams said.

The marijuana plants are “a cash crop,” he said. A pound of marijuana, which is about one plant, can sell for at least $2,000 on the black market, officials said.

The operational cost of the marijuana crackdown isn’t funded with tax dollars, but comes from funds seized from drug dealers in federal raids, he said. Locally, each law enforcement agency involved just provides the manpower, he said.

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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inquiringmind said...

How can you "manufacture" a plant that grows naturally as a weed around here?

July 27, 2011 at 9:51 a.m.
harrystatel said...

“We feel like adjudicating marijuana is just as important as [other drugs],” he said. “It has ties to organized crime.”

So protection rackets and crime are OK when the government does it?

Next thing you know little Smoking-Reefer Susie will be groping citizens at airports, providing guns to Mexican cartels, stealing taxpayers money, invading countries, spending money she doesn't have, handing out payoffs to politicians and her friends, bailing out banks, dropping bombs on non-combatants, denying people the right to pray at National Cemeteries, passing laws to reward incompetence and public corruption, sending servicemen and women to protect and die for thugs like Karsai and providing protection to dictators around the world?

Just shoot little Susie next time before she unleashes evil upon humanity.

I hope I'm on the jury. Here's what I'd do!

http://harrystatel.com/?p=1105

July 27, 2011 at 10:17 a.m.
ceeweed said...

I pray that our guvment will continue to protect us from ourselves as we are to dumb to handle a little reefer. Stoners pose such a dire threat to our freedom to march, lock step, to the beat of our dear guvment's dictates.

July 27, 2011 at 11:35 a.m.
gmomma said...

I feel ya Harry, are we gonna be invited to the pot burning ceremony? How much manpower, fuel and tax payers dollars went in to busting 21 whole organized crime plants...LMAO!! And why is the man that lives across the street from me still free to rape innocent women and teens as he is a convicted aggrevated statutory rape felon (in violation) and living with a woman with children? Where is the taxpayers money to lock him up and throw away the key???

July 27, 2011 at 2:44 p.m.
gmomma said...

Oh yeah, taxpayers are not paying for the cost of the pot crackdown.....the drug dealers are paying the feds to raid their backyards.....are you f'n serious???

July 27, 2011 at 2:48 p.m.
Rtazmann said...

The thing is ,,,,is it seems like law enforcement enjoy the publicity of this issue,,,but it doesn't go beyond that...of course there would be a better story of corruption from within...All these posts are nice but not a reality of the mainstream South or America for all that matter....mainstream is saying one thing and doing something different..We must face reality with reality and not what government or law enforcement want to hear,,,in other words lets stop chasing our tail on something that is here to stay...it is time to come up with a better idea rather than business as usual. Or throw in the towel on something that has not worked in 50 years,,,and by the way for those whom are blind organized crime has been here that long anyway.,,,wake-up!!!!

July 11, 2012 at 10:22 a.m.
Rtazmann said...

Fact is ,,,Law enforcement know who the drugs dealers are,,if you are to accomplish anything you have to quit the scharade.

July 11, 2012 at 10:47 a.m.
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