The Fresno County Sheriff’s Workplace (FCSO) is reporting that neighborhood farmers attempting to legally develop industrial hemp are getting targeted by thieves who appear to consider that the plants are marijuana.
According to FCSO, there has been an improve in reports of hemp theft, with 3 incidents occurring inside the previous two weeks.
“To the naked eye, it is tricky to distinguish a hemp plant from a marijuana plant,” says FCSO Public Data Officer Tony Botti. “Not only do they appear the very same in each the juvenile and adult stages, they smell the very same and have flowering buds. It is probably these are the motives the Fresno County Sheriff’s Workplace has been not too long ago getting an enhanced quantity of reports for hemp thefts.”
At about 7:30 p.m. on September 27, deputies have been dispatched to a place close to the intersection of E. American Avenue and S. Leonard Avenue in Del Rey exactly where the house owner had approached a couple of folks who have been loading hemp into their automobile
A single of the suspects pointed a firearm at the house owner ahead of driving away.
Deputies have been unable to find the suspects soon after browsing the location.
On October four at about 7:00 p.m., a group of 15 to 20 folks, with 1 in possession of a firearm, arrived at the very same house to steal plants.
The group was in a position to flee the scene ahead of deputies arrived.
At about 7:00 p.m. on October 7, deputies apprehended two guys attempting to steal hemp plants from a field on S. Willow Avenue close to E. Mountain View Avenue in Selma.
Deputies located the suspects, 39-year-old Frank Carillo of Fresno and 51-year-old Abraham Garza of Fresno, in possession of roughly 25 plants which have been valued at $five,00.
Each suspects have been booked into Fresno County jail on felony charges of grand theft.
Garza also faces a misdemeanor methamphetamine possession charge.
Whilst hemp farmers are essential by the Division of Agriculture to post suitable signage on their properties, some have opted to place up No Trespassing indicators or notices that state that hemp plants with no THC are getting grown in the fields and not marijuana.