What began as a tip to the Kickapoo Tribal Police Department two months ago led to a joint effort by several law enforcement agencies Tuesday as they destroyed 2,167 marijuana plants they pulled from a rural area near the Lincoln/Pottawatomie County line. According to agents from the District Attorney’s Drug Task Force, the marijuana plants would have had a street value of more than $2 million.
The tip that came about two months ago resulted in Kickapoo tribal police initiating an investigation into the possible marijuana grow near SH 102 and EW 1070 Road. During that probe, agents said there were numerous marijuana plants found, and some of them were growing on Kickapoo Tribal Trust Land.
After conducting surveillance and flying over and watching the area for quite some time, investigators were unable to develop any suspects in the case, so a decision was make to pull and destroy the plants, an agent said.
In that operation that unfolded Tuesday, DA Task Force investigators, Kickapoo tribal police officers and deputies from the Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Office removed the marijuana plants and destroyed them.
An agent said the pot plants were growing in patches in several different areas, such as 100 plants in one area, and maybe 200 plants in another, with most of the plants encompassing land that would have been considered about one-half acre, if combined.
The plants did not appear to be manicured, investigators said, but there were trails leading to several areas where the plants were growing. Because of the way the plants were spreading, it was difficult to see how many were there until the eradication operation Tuesday.
The investigation did not result in any arrests, but the team said they prevented a large amount of marijuana from hitting the streets.
Anyone with information concerning drug activity in Pottawatomie or Lincoln County can call District Attorney Richard Smothermon’s Drug and Violent Crime Task Force tip line at 888-877-5520.