Pot-Induced "Deja Vu" in the Foothills
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Federal agents and Fresno County Sheriff's Deputies pulled nearly eight-thousand plants from John Simpson's property in late June. But, it was what he did after detectives left two months ago that landed him in jail.
It took hours in June, for Fresno County Sheriff's Deputies to pull and destroy all the marijuana on John Simpson's property. At the time, Simpson exclusively talked to Action News, on the condition we not show his face.
"The state shouldn't have sold me a license," Simpson said. "They took my money giving me a state stamped license telling me I could do this."
But once the investigators drove away, a flyover not long after revealed something Lieutenant Rick Ko doesn't see often.
Lt. Rick Ko said, "It's really unusual to have to come back to a location a second time in a season."
These plants were all taken from Simpson's residence, investigators believe almost immediately after they left his home eight weeks ago, he allowed these to be put in the ground, and if he's federally prosecuted, he faced a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison.
Sheriff's investigators say Simpson has had plenty of opportunities to comply with their requests.
Lt. Rick Ko said, "We had noticed him before that, several weeks later we served a search warrant, eradicate his plants, talk to him some more and then he replants-not very wise."
While sheriff's investigators were in the air, they also found another grow on a hilltop near the US Forest Hume Lake ranger station. Along with federal agents, 1300 plants were also plucked from that location.
As for Simpson, he will be federally arraigned Wednesday. For now, he is being held in the Fresno County jail.
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