Clinic Stories

A Brush With The Law

In 1992 we lived in Georgia on 20 acres and stabled several horses. A college student who cared for the horses came to the house one Friday afternoon to report that someone was growing marijuana on our property. We walked to a strip of land beside the pasture where some plants were growing. "Are you sure it's marijuana?", I asked. He emphatically replied, "Yeah, I'm sure." I called the police and was connected to a detective. He was ready to clock out for the weekend and said he would stop by on Monday to investigate.

Monday morning the detective arrived in an unmarked car. We drove into the pasture and as we approached a patch of trees there were two teenage boys standing by the plants. He sped to the fence, we both jumped out and gave chase. “Halt, Police!” he shouted. One boy continued but the other stopped, slowly turned around and a smirk quickly turned to wide-eyed terror, his arms pulled away from his body, palms forward, when he realized a gun was pointed at him. The cop had only one set of handcuffs so he ordered him to lay face down and secured the boy's hands behind his back with his belt. The gun fell next to the boy's head. I picked it up and handed it back. The detective told him he was under arrest for suspicion of growing drugs and asked three questions – What is your name, how old are you and do you have a job? (He was an 18 year old college student and I assume he was trying to see he was selling drugs for income). I stood guard while the cop sought out the second boy who, watching what was going on, came out straight away. He was cuffed, we walked to the car, locked them in the back and went to retrieve some of the plants.

Although I was assured earlier that it was indeed marajuana, I was not entirely convinced and had a gnawing fear that a needless arrest had occurred from bad information. For better or worse, he confirmed that it was marajuana, took several plants as evidence and said he would be back to get the rest.

Not hearing anything I called toward the end of the day and learned that the boy's would not admit to anything and guilty of nothing more than standing by contraband, they were released. He asked me to collect the plants and he would stop by the next day for them.

For the only time in my life I had marajuana in my house. We took pictures. Not hearing anything the following day I again called and was asked to bring the crop to the police station. The detective assured me that he would be waiting at the door. Now, I can confirm that the very definition of discomfort is delivering illegal drugs to a police station. I drove as if my cargo was precious, fragile and off balance and arrived with a back seat filled with marajuana. The detective was not waiting. I announced myself to the dispatcher who boomed “Oh, you're the one who's growing marajuana.” Paniced, I blurted out that no, it was just on my property, he laughed and was pleased that his joke found a victim.

The detective came out and we carried the stash inside. He gave me more information about the case and related several unusual things that happened the previous day, ending with “and some guy stole a car and left his ID on the front seat!” Not recognizing the ID I asked what it was – a parole card. It was another first, so I looked at the picture and name, and said that I knew the parolee and he worked for a nearby turkey grower. I saw the turkey farmer a week later and heard that the police came by but it was the thief's cousin with the same name in the picture. The innocent cousin gave the detective the correct address and that arrest stuck. My life of crime was over.

Back to Top