2017-02-16 / Front Page

Over 200 plants, 50 pounds of marijuana found in bust

Two sisters from the Merritt area were arrested Feb. 5 for manufacturing marijuana, following an investigation by the Missaukee County Sheriff’s Office.

Makenzie McLeod, 19, and Callie McLeod, 23, both of Falmouth, were arraigned in 84th District Court. Each demanded preliminary examination on the same charge, delivery/manufacture of five to 45 kilograms of a controlled substance (marijuana), or 20 to 200 plants. Their preliminary examinations are scheduled for Feb. 23 in 84th District Court, Lake City.

According to a press release from the sheriff’s office, a search warrant was ex­ecuted Feb. 5 on South 13 Mile Road. Police seized 171 marijuana plants and more than 10 pounds of processed mari­juana.

First Lt. Joshua Lator, commander of the Houghton Lake State Police Post, said the ongoing investigation began about six months ago, when some “un­usual” purchases of land, specifically pole buildings and outbuildings, were made.

Missaukee County Undersheriff Wil Yancer said some of the owners of the properties had a Florida address.

Lator said tips came into local law enforcement agencies, and the Traverse Narcotics Team (TNT) began investi­gating. He said two Missaukee County Sheriff’s deputies then investigated a car illegally parked in the road near one of the properties and could smell marijuana coming from a building there, which led to the search warrant being executed at South 13 Mile Road, Butterfield Town­ship.

More search warrants were executed Feb. 7 on three additional properties, one on East Kelly Road and one on South Nelson Road, both located in Butterfield Township, and one on North Northway Drive, located in Pioneer Township. Seized there were a total of 145 live plants, 57 hanging plants and approxi­mately 50 pounds of processed mari­juana plants.

Assisting the Missaukee County Sheriff’s Office were the Traverse Nar­cotics Team, the Michigan State Police, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol and Homeland Security Investigations, ac­cording to the press release, and the agencies were instrumental in the inves­tigation, surveillance and execution of the warrants.

Lator said there is a “really good working relationship,” as well as good communication between law enforce­ment agencies in the Missaukee County area.

Bond on each of the McLeods was set at $50,000.

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