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SB County Sheriff Requests Harsher Punishment for Illegal Cannabis Farms

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Oregon Department of Agriculture
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Flikr Creative Commons

San Bernardino County Sheriff, Shannon Dicus, Sent out a letter to local legislators today.

In the letter, Sheriff Dicus is asking for harsher punishments for individuals running illegal cannabis farms. Last month I interviewed the Sheriff during his first week in office. He made comments about how illegal marijuana farms were causing a lot of issues across the county.

He said, "Because it is just proliferated our deserts, waters being pumped out of the ground at just ridiculous rates. We have residents all over the county that are very upset with smelling it; people protecting their groves are actually confronting civilians who live in the area, and it's just a big problem."

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Official photo of Sheriff Dicus.

In his letter, he says there are currently over 1,085 farms, ranging in size from one greenhouse to over 300 greenhouses. In the county, there are only two cities that allow legal cultivation, Adelanto and Needles. In his letter and our conversation, he shared why he thought the current penalties weren't enough to deter the farms.

He stated, "Prop 64 took it from a felony to a misdemeanor, so the penalties aren't substantial. And when you talk about one of these illegal groves, on average make over a million dollars, a $500 misdemeanor fine is not the right tool to be able to solve the problem."

Sheriff Dicus posted the letter on the department's Facebook page but did not specify who he sent the letters to.