A Missouri man’s attempt to get rid of the evidence by setting fire to a cannabis grow-op inside a silo owned by Missouri State University was stubbed out when police arrived before he could finish the job.
Officers with the Springfield Police Department responded to a call of a possible break-in at the silos in downtown Springfield on Dec. 19, notes a police blotter Facebook post. Police had received reports that several people were inside the vacant silos.
Arriving shortly after 4 a.m., the police discovered not just the man, who was found hiding inside a room there, but also the growing operation.
Once inside the room, it was clear from the smell that something was burning. The man was told to leave the room, where he was placed in handcuffs, and the police then found the grow-op on fire inside the room.
The seemingly newly blazed crop indicated to police that he “set the grow on fire when he heard officers announcing for him to exit,” the post reads. Fortunately, the weak fire burned itself out.
The man was arrested. Now in Greene County Jail, Anthony Conrad faces a charge of possession of a controlled substance.
At least some of the silos are now vacant. In 2016, though, Springfield News-Leader reported that two clusters of the silos might be leased out to a start-up company whose focus was water-based food-growing methods. Other silos in the state have been used for bed and breakfast accommodations.
According to the Joshua Wilson law firm, possession of a small amount of cannabis is considered a low-level misdemeanor. That said “possession of larger amounts of marijuana can be a felony, even if the defendant really only intended the marijuana for personal or medical use.”
Cultivating 35 grams or less of cannabis, however, could result in a felony charge, as much as four years in jail and a US$10,000 fine.