KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — A series three of raids on marijuana grow sites in Klamath County yielded more than 550 illegal plants and several arrests — all done in the same day, according to the Klamath County Sheriff's Office (KCSO).
The first investigation began on Thursday in the 17000-block of Patricia Lane north of Merrill. Deputies arrested 35-year-old Jared Burger and 37-year-old Audrey Roe after finding 530 plants and no medical marijuana cards or legal permits to grow recreationally associated with the house.
Leaving the legal allotment of four plants, KCSO says that it took 526 plants to destroy, and charged Burger and Roe with Manufacturing a Controlled Substance and Possession of a Controlled Substance — both for marijuana. They were cited to appear in court on October 22.
On the same day, another investigation found an illegal grow operation in the same area. Deputies seized 12 more plants, leaving the house with the number of plants allowed under the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program.
KCSO says that the address, names, and charges related to this second site will not be released "pending further investigation."
Law enforcement launched a third investigation on Thursday in the 7700-block of Donegal Avenue in Klamath Falls — seizing 15 plants and leaving the allotted four. In this case, KCSO again said that the names and charges at this location will not be released until further investigation has been completed.
In total, KCSO seized and destroyed 553 illegal marijuana plants.
After a similar series of busts in August, Sheriff Chris Kaber and his office expressed mounting frustration with the rampant black market marijuana trade, declaring that marijuana cultivators need to "grow legal or get out."
In this week's statement, despite the size of the busts, Kaber's tone was more reserved:
“The Klamath County Sheriff’s Office wishes everyone to know there are legal options available for them to grow marijuana and if they would just do that they would not be subject to investigation, criminal charges, and seizure of their crops," said Kaber in a statement. "Rampant abuse of the legal system allowing for marijuana use and production is the norm and we will continue to root out illegal growers using funds made available through a grant from the State of Oregon.”