Charges have been filed against a Cedaredge couple accused of operating a large marijuana grow operation on Cactus Park Road east of Cedaredge.
Stormy Griffith, 36, and his wife Stacy, 32, have been charged with cultivation of marijuana (more than 30 plants); possession with intent to manufacture, dispense, sell or distribute marijuana or marijuana concentrate; processing or manufacturing marijuana and marijuana concentrate; distribution of marijuana concentrate; and possession of a Schedule I controlled substance. Additional felony charges include money laundering, evasion of marijuana excise taxes and failure to file marijuana excise tax returns.
Arraignment is scheduled Wednesday, Feb. 10, in Delta District Court.
The charges stem from an investigation that began in early 2015, after neighbors expressed concerns about the activities taking place on Cactus Park Road.
After a lengthy investigation, and numerous attempts to determine if the Griffiths were in compliance with Amendments 20 and 64, a search warrant was obtained. On June 30, the search warrant was executed by the Delta County Sheriff's Office, Colorado Bureau of Investigation, Delta-Montrose Drug Task Force, officers from the Cedaredge and Delta Police Departments, and Colorado Department of Revenue.
Law enforcement officers seized over 2,500 plants, but left a small number of plants the Griffiths are allowed under Amendment 20. Delta County Sheriff said a sizable amount of dry material was also seized, along with equipment used to extract hashish oil.
All of the parties involved in the execution of the search warrant have been notified of the Griffiths' intent to sue. Through their legal representative, Corry & Associates, they cite unreasonable damages and illegally seized property.
"We welcome the challenge," McKee said, who said both Amendments 20 and 64 are vaguely worded. A court ruling would set precedent that could be of assistance in enforcing compliance issues surrounding marijuana operations, McKee said.
A collaborative effort between the Delta County Sheriff's Office and municipal law enforcement agencies throughout Delta County has resulted in a proposal for a 1 percent sales tax increase to fund public safety. A PowerPoint presentation titled "Back the Badge" is starting to make the rounds at city/town council meetings, service club luncheons and other events.