COVINA >> Police raided a an illicit marijuana shop selling marijuana and pot-laced candy out of a Covina storefront Thursday, officials said.
A tip from the public first brought the attention of police to the commercial unit in the 400 block of West Badillo Street, Covina police Sgt. Gregg Peterson said.
The Covina police Special Enforcement Bureau launched an investigation and began staking out the business, Peterson said.
“They surveilled the location and determined that the location was possibly involved in the sales of marijuana,” the sergeant said.
Police went in to the business about noon to speak with the owner and immediately saw evidence of marijuana sales, he said.
The business owner, 40-year-old Juan Francisco Pacheco of Covina, was detained as police obtained a search warrant for the unit, Peterson said.
Police recovered a significant amount of marijuana, cash and marijuana-laced candy, some of which was still in the process of being manufactured, he said. A tally of the amount of drugs and money seized was not available late Thursday.
Police also seized a handgun from the business, Peterson said.
Pacheco was expected to be booked on suspicion of selling marijuana as well as possible weapon violations, however, the investigation was ongoing, Peterson said.
It was not immediately clear of the business was operating as a medical marijuana dispensary, though city law prohibits such businesses in Covina.
According to county booking records, Pacheco was released from jail Friday pending his initial court appearance after posting $25,000 bail.
PHOTOS courtesy of the Covina Police Department
MONTEBELLO >> Police seized more than 1,200 marijuana plants valued at more than half-a-million dollars Tuesday and arrested two men after raiding two commercial properties neighboring a Montebello school, authorities said.
Police arrested Nicholas Stone, 23, off North Hills and Artin Khudanyan, 32, of Glendale on suspicion of cultivating marijuana following the busts, which took place Tuesday afternoon and evening at two commercial units in the 3300 block of West Beverly Boulevard, Montebello police officials said in a written statement.
The illicit indoor farm was separated only by an alley from Eastmont Intermediate School, which had already let out for the day when police carried out the raid.
• VIDEO: A look at the pot farm in the Montebello building
An anonymous tip spawned the rapidly-developing investigation, Montebello police Lt. Andy Vuncanon said. Police then began a stake-out outside one of the two adjacent, unmarked business units.
“During the surveillance, we saw the suspects in or about the business complex,” the lieutenant said.
Officers stopped a car occupied by Stone and Khudanyan nearby shortly after 3 p.m. and detained them pending further investigation, Vuncanon said.
Investigators then obtained a search warrant for the first business.
“Once inside the commercial property, investigators identified a fully operational marijuana grow equipped with artificial lighting, ventilating fans/temperature control, an odor control system and soil/nutrients for the plants,” according to the police statement.
The rear portion of the business, where the marijuana was growing, was separated from the front by a metal security door, Vuncanon said.
But the investigators were not finished. The investigation led detectives to obtain a warrant to search the business next door as well, where officers uprooted another 500 to 700 marijuana plants, officials said.
“Once inside the (second) commercial property, investigators once again identified a fully operational marijuana grow equipped with same type of operation and set up as next door,” the police statement said.
Vuncanon described the setup as a “very sophisticated, very clean operation.”
According to Los Angeles County booking record, Stone and Khudanyan were both released from custody Wednesday pending their initial court appearances after posting $50,000 bail each.
PHOTOS: Nicholas Stone, 23, of North Hills [MIDDLE] and Artin Khudanyan, 32, of Glendale [BELOW] were arrested on suspicion of cultivating more than 1,200 marijuana plants in two commercial buildings in the 3300 block of West Beverly Boulevard in Montebello on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2016. (Courtesy, Montebello Police Department)
(Courtesy – Montebello Police Department)
DIAMOND BAR >> Deputies responding to a report of a possible burglary late Saturday led deputies to discover more than 1,000 marijuana plants growing inside a Diamond Bar home, authorities said.
Officials received a call just before midnight reporting a possible break-in at a two-story house in the 800 block of Rexford Court, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Sgt. Byron Ward said.
Deputies found no intruder, but saw smoke emanating from the second floor of the home, Ward said.
Los Angeles County firefighters quickly extinguished a small fire, the sergeant said. Authorities found the home had been set up as an indoor marijuana-growing operation, “in excess of 1,000 plants.”
Arson was not suspected, he added. Officials were looking into the possibility the fire was sparked by an electrical issue.
No one was at the home, and no suspects were in custody Sunday in connection with the grow house, Ward said. The investigation was ongoing.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Walnut-Diamond Bar Station at 909-595-2264. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
ARCADIA >> A fire at an Arcadia home led authorities to discover about 700 marijuana plants growing inside early Saturday.
Firefighters responded to a report of a fire about 12 a.m. at a house in the 1000 block of South 4th Avenue, Arcadia police Lt. Roy Nakamura said in a written statement.
“The Arcadia Fire Department personnel responded and observed numerous marijuana plants in different stages of cultivation as well as equipment used for cultivation purposes and contacted the police department,” Nakamura said.
Officers ultimately uprooted an estimated 700 pot plants from the home, police said. An estimated street value was not available.
No one was at the home at the time of the fire, and no arrests had been made, Nakamura said. The investigation is ongoing.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Arcadia police at 626-574-5150. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
LA HABRA >> Police arrested three people and seized a large cache of guns, including assault weapons, marijuana and cash during three early-morning raids in La Habra stemming from an ongoing drug investigation, authorities said.
La Habra police were joined by local, county and federal counterparts as they carried out search warrants about 3 a.m. in the 1400 block of West Lambert Road, the 1200 block of North Cypress Street and the 600 block of South Palm Avenue, La Habra police officials said in written statement.
“Searches at these locations led to the discovery and confiscation of 11 assault rifles, 25 handguns, 12 illegal 30-round assault rifle magazines, and parts to build another 12 assault rifles,” according to the police statement.
Investigators also seized about 40 pounds of marijuana and $44,600 in suspected drug proceeds, police said.
Arrested were Adam James Kinney, 28, Grant David Winn, 30, and Kristina Thompson, 25, all of La Habra, according to La Habra police and Orange County booking records.
They were booked on suspicion of drug-related crimes, as well as child endangerment, officials said.
Kinney was being held in lieu of $50,000 bail pending his initial court appearance, while Winn and Thompson were being held in lieu of $100,000 bail each, records show.
PHOTO courtesy of the La Habra Police Department.
ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> A man armed with a knife barged into a Rowland Heights home and robbed a resident of a small amount of money and marijuana late Wednesday, officials said.
The crime was reported about 10 p.m. at a home in the 17900 block of Calle Los Arboles, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. John Saleeby said.
A man in his 20s has been in contact with the robber via social media prior to the incident, Saleeby said.
The robber arrived with a knife and demanded money from the victim, ultimately fleeing with less than $50 and a “small amount” of marijuana, the lieutenant said.
He was last seen getting into a green Toyota pickup truck with a long-haired driver waiting at the wheel, Saleeby said.
ALTADENA >> A man claiming to be delivering medical marijuana for a dispensary was robbed of both cannabis and cash early Thursday in a residential Altadena neighborhood, authorities said.
The crime was reported just before 2 a.m. at Beverly Way and Maiden Lane, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Cruz Solis said.
Deputies first responded to the neighborhood after residents reported a man knocking on doors, apparently in some sort of distress, the lieutenant said.
The victim, a 26-year-old Pasadena man, told police he was delivering for a legal medical marijuana dispensary when a man grabbed him, threatened him and robbed him of marijuana, cash and his car keys, Solis said.
They keys turned up in some nearby bushes the following day, he said.
The amount of money and marijuana stolen was not available. A detailed suspect description was not available.
COVINA >> A man rummaging for recyclables earlier this week discovered more than 200 pounds of marijuana discarded in a dumpster in Covina, officials said.
The unusual find was reported to police Wednesday night, Covina police Sgt. Ray Marquez said.
A man looked into the dumpster at Badillo Street and Grand Avenue and found six, 33-gallon trash bags stuffed with marijuana, the sergeant said. Police took possession of the pot, which was promptly destroyed.
Investigators were looking into how the large cache of marijuana ended up in the dumpster.
HACIENDA HEIGHTS >> Deputies dismantled a “honey oil” lab in a Hacienda Heights home and detained a possible suspect Wednesday, officials said.
The bust took place about 4 p.m. at a house in the 16800 block of Twin Hill Drive, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Robert Tubbs said.
Deputies found an operation in which concentrated cannabis oil, also known as “honey oil,” was being extracted from marijuana, the lieutenant said.
One person was being detained as the investigation continued Wednesday night.
A Los Angeles County Fire Department hazardous materials crew stood by as a precaution due to butane and other chemicals used in the illicit process, Tubbs said.
ROWLAND HEIGHTS >> Narcotics investigators seized $1.8 million worth of marijuana from two Rowland Heights homes and arrested six suspects during a bust Tuesday, authorities said.
Detectives developed information that a home in the 18600 block of La Guardia Street in Rowland Heights was being used to grow marijuana, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Detective T. Simpson said in a written statement. Deputies arrived to conduct a search later the same day.
“An elaborate marijuana grow system was discovered at the location where several thousand dollars in U.S. currency and 300 marijuana plants at various stages of growth were seized,” Simpson said. Equipment such as lights, filters and fans used to grow the marijuana and conceal its odor were also discovered.
Deputies arrested four men and two women at the La Guardia Street home, officials said. Their names were not released Wednesday.
A child at the home was placed into protective custody by the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services.
Information gleaned at the La Guardia grow house led detectives to another in the 1200 block of Lindengrove Avenue, Simpson said.
“Although no suspects were located at the residence, (sheriff’s) narcotics investigators seized 646 marijuana plants, also at various stages of growth,” the detective said.
“The investigation is ongoing and there is no additional information available at this time,” he said.
Nearby in Baldwin Park, a house fire led police to discover about 1,000 marijuana plants growing inside a home Tuesday evening, officials said. An El Monte man was arrested in connection with the grow operation.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Detective Simpson at 909-595-2264. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
PHOTOS courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.