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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 9/17/2005 11:41:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/17/2005 12:52:56 PM EDT by jff24gordn]
Background info
I am 26 years old, inheartied 600 acres of farm land with my sis from our parents. We lease it out to be farmed. 200 acres of corn and 300 acres of soy beans. The guy, "Farmer J" who we rent it to is in the middle of a family problem. He used to farm with his brother and dad, Last time he was in a spot with the 2 of them at the same time, his dad held him while his bro punched him. real happy family.

the story...
2 weeks ago, I caught 1 county, 2 state and several ppl who didnt ID themselves on my farm. I knew one of them and they were sitting behind the barns while there were some more in the woods with "Farmer J". All they would tell me is that he was showing them where his deer cameras were at. We have several TV shows going to show up here this fall to deer hunt. They wouldnt tell me anything else. But since they were back there with "Farmer J" and I was in a hurry I didnt have time to find out what was going on. I was taking our retired farm hand to dialises and we were late. That night rumers are running around that they pulled 2500 plants from my land. The paper said the next thay that there were 1000 on my farm, 500 on "Farmer J" farm and another 1000 on a piece of land that he dont farm anymore, but his bro and dad farms. In a fromerly owned gov facility surrounded by razor wire fence and a keycard gate.
That day they surched "Farmer J"s house, garage, and truck. They gently removed the pot by driving a snowplow throught he field, and cutting and trampling the corn down to get the pot. They have yet to contact me or him since that day. "Farmer J"s lawyer cant find any paperwork at the courthouse on a serch warrent for where they went. "Farmer J"s deer cameras have cought the same officer in a green polo and kakki pants on my farm, his farm, and another farm that he farms that had no pot on several occasions. And they are following "Farmer J" around. Not some beat up car, or even a balck suburbon, but in a state poliece helo. You know, flying 50' off the ground directly above aint exactly discrete.
I have got ahold of some phone numbers of a DEA guy and a state poliece guy who were suposd to be incharge, and I'm gonna have a word with them monday. And advice? We've got pics of the officer in the woods, helo in the air, and alot of the damaged crops. And I havent been out shooting in my back yard for a while. I bet they would frown on my bumpfiring my AR pistol.

edit
Forgot one more thing.. When they surched his trucks, they "found" a few small pieces of leaves and stems in one truck. They said that they had been picked within 3-5 days. The truck in question is an 85 chevy on 44" boggers, no front drive shaft and blown out rear axle. It has not moved an inch in 5 months.
The pot was planted halfway between the corn rows, 3' apart in places 20 rows wide. It wasnt verry well hidden.
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 11:44:30 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/17/2005 11:45:01 AM EDT by arowneragain]
edit - didn't see which forum this was in - found it in 'active topics'.

sorry!



Link Posted: 9/17/2005 2:04:06 PM EDT
So what's the question?
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 2:18:42 PM EDT
Where in IN are you? If you don't want to post, please email or IM me. My mother has a farm in Scottsburg area that she inherited and has leased out for several years. Just want to keep her aware of any problems that come up in that area.
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 2:31:34 PM EDT
What kind of questions, points should I bitch to their commanding officer about w/o sounding like it was mine? As of yet, they have not pointed any fingers at me, but with this being such a big find, I dont want them to look at me with any suspession. It seems as if this investigation is not being done by all of the best officers in the force.
Just any good advice on what to do.
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 2:32:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ColtRifle:
So what's the question?



+1
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 2:51:18 PM EDT
From the view of the law... if you really have no knowledge of what is happening, you should be fine. BUT, not knowing about it doesn't mean they (police) cannot come after you. They just have to have enough evidents to link the pot back to you as part of the growers. Anything can happen once it goes to trial court.

Your best bet is to get a lawyer, just in case. If this bust is as big as your story have it to be... it's going to be a federal case inwhich case, definitly get a lawyer. In any case, document anything they talk to you about, if they want to ask you questions.... ask them does it have to do with the case and probably not answer. You really don't want anything you said coming back at you. Unless they are arresting you, stick with your 4th and 6th amendment rights. If they said that it has nothing to do with the case, then you can answer... but I would ask to have it be recorded.

Yeah, it may sound like a lot... but it beats going to jail for something you have nothing to do with ~NewbieDave
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 3:53:15 PM EDT
First of all, if you plan on bitching about the damage to the surrounding crops, forget it. The agency is not responsible for damage done while serving search warrants or collecting evidence. When they bust down your door, they simply "prop" it back up. The only way you can bitch is if you can show they did UNREASONABLE damage to accomplish their mission.

Second, I doubt very seriously that if they seized as much as you say they did, they simply went there on a whim. They most likely "watched" the area for a while and documeted who, what , when, where, etc... So they most likely know full well you had nothing to do with it.

To you, it may look like they don't know what they are doing, but they most likely do... they just are not gonna let you in on anything at this point.
Link Posted: 9/17/2005 5:50:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Bowhntr6pt:
First of all, if you plan on bitching about the damage to the surrounding crops, forget it. The agency is not responsible for damage done while serving search warrants or collecting evidence. When they bust down your door, they simply "prop" it back up. The only way you can bitch is if you can show they did UNREASONABLE damage to accomplish their mission.

Second, I doubt very seriously that if they seized as much as you say they did, they simply went there on a whim. They most likely "watched" the area for a while and documeted who, what , when, where, etc... So they most likely know full well you had nothing to do with it.

To you, it may look like they don't know what they are doing, but they most likely do... they just are not gonna let you in on anything at this point.



+1. Just because they haven't told you anything doesn't mean they aren't doing a good investigation. Sounds like 'Farmer J' is a suspect, not you. Also sounds like it was his crops that were damaged when they removed the weed, not yours. If that's the case, you don't really have anything to bitch about. Based just on your post, it sounds like 'Farmer J' was using the corn crop as a cover to grow dope on your land and got caught. If you didn't have anything to do with the dope growing you should probably just stay out of it- it sounds like 'Farmer J's problem. You could probably make it yours if you really tried, though.
Link Posted: 9/18/2005 2:18:55 PM EDT
So pretty much ignore it and it might go away? I havent seen anything resembling a search warrent, whitch shouldnt that be needed for them to come on my farm. The crops are 1/3 mine. So 1/3 of the corn they mowed down was mine. They could have drove to the spot where it was planted at, but they brought a truck with a snowplow to drive through the corn. Farmer J is a suspect becasue he put the deer camreas in a treeline 300yds from the pot. He was setting up survaliance on the deer, not the pot that is out of viewing range.
So if they are running around on private property conducting survaliance, shoulndt there be some paperwork trail?
Link Posted: 9/18/2005 3:16:44 PM EDT
If you leased the land to another person, the warrant will be made out to effect the person/place who has the lease as they are the primary person responsible for what's on the leased land, although you still may not be totally in the clear. In essence, you have leased away part of your "landowner rights". This issue falls under Civil law.

If you don't live there on the land, maintain an expectation of privacy over a designated part of the land or buildings, such as a barn or shed, then you will not be involved in any of the process. If your lease excludes the lessor from using certain areas or lands, then the warrant may or may not include those areas. It will depend upon the investigation and how or what YOUR retained portions are involved with the whole deal.

Bottom line... if a warrant was excuted, a copy was either given to the person for which the warrant was effecting or, in the absence of such person, a copy was posted and left in a well observable place.

Then again, if the pot was in a field and clearly visible, a warrant is not needed as it falls under one of the recognized warrant exceptions known as the Plain View Doctrine. Understand this, woods, fields, yards, etc are not the same as your house/home.

There is some type of paper trail, but at this point, it's none of your business, even if the investigation involves you. Once you are charged with a crime, then the "paper trail" becomes your business and your atty will be able to obtain everything the LEO's have under discovery.

Apparently there are a lot of issues and factors at hand here. I would keep to my own business and wait until contacted by LEO's, soon enough they will be coming to see you.
Link Posted: 9/18/2005 5:26:49 PM EDT
So you're telling us that there was all that marijuana planted in your corn and you didn't know about it until the cops showed up?
Link Posted: 9/19/2005 4:25:47 AM EDT
Someone could plant pot in a corn field without the farmer or land owner knowing about it; it has happened. But that is a lot of pot, I'm not buying the nobody knows nothing story in this case.

And the police aren't buying it either. I'd want to know what the police think about it. It seems you are all pissy at the LEOs for finding the pot; why aren't you all pissy at the people that planted the pot?

You need to talk to your insurance agent about the damage and you need to find a new tenant for your farm.
Link Posted: 9/19/2005 7:07:07 AM EDT
Your story doesn't make much sense. Maybe it's just how you are telling it and maybe you are leaving a lot out.


Bottom line: If he was renting from you and growing pot in the corn then he's going down for it. If he's leasing the property from you then there is no reason for you to care about his trampled corn...except that you probably aren't going to get your lease paid for this year.

Learning point: Don't rent to shitheads.
Link Posted: 9/19/2005 8:20:43 PM EDT
Farmer J aint just a run of the mill guy, I also work on the side for him farming, hunt, shoot, fish, and cook out with his family. The crops on my land are 2/3 his, 1/3 mine. I figure they knocked down about enough for me to buy another evil black rifle.
The field thats its in aint level, the field varies by more than 40' of elevation and it aint that big of a field, maybe 30 acres. It was in a spot where it could not be seen unless you were there or in a plane. I dont know of any farmer out there that walks every inch of every field throughout the year. Especailly on a year like this when you try not to look at it at all.
I am pissy about the people who planted it, but I dont have a clue who it was. But I do know who went in there with a snowplow to get it out. At least when the other growers go in to harvest, they dont make a big mess. They try to be as discrete as possiable.
I do know next time I find some, I'm gonna mix up a hand sprayer full of garmoxone, and spray it down. It has also been known as adgent orange and paraquat. Looks like i'm not the first to think of this.
Link Posted: 9/20/2005 4:48:02 AM EDT
Link Posted: 9/22/2005 11:34:21 PM EDT
If they posted the cameras pursuant to a warrant they won't have to make a return on the warrant for a specified period of time. This return can be sealed for a period of time (if a judge OK's in advance) if disclosure of it could hamper the investigation. I wouldn't talk to you very much if it were me cuz I don't know if or how much you're involved ( hope you're not). If the warrant were obtained from a federal judge the return wouldn't be made in the county clerks office, it would be in the federal court for your district. Local officers often are in task forces which give them limited federal powers such as charging federally and obtaining federal search warrants.

Most outdoor grows are found via flyovers which negate the need for a search warrant. If it's generated an investigation instead of an immediate seizure then they've likely been able to document who the dope belongs to conclusively. In most states once arrested you get a copy of the warrant and probable cause statement that's the basis for the warrant. You have to make a motion for the court to order discovery which gets the other material generated in the course of the investigation. In some cases a cooperating individual can remain unidentified even through initial discovery if the prosecutor has genuine reasons and the judge agrees.

As far as the leaves in the truck. I found 67 libs in a car that had rusted into the ground.

All that being said "Farmer J" is f***** in my opinion. He may have been trying to set you up as the fall guy for the whole thing. If you've been captured on video repeatedly going to the fields and in the specific areas of the grow you may want to pack a toothbrush.

If you're asked about your relationship with "Farmer J" and you have documentation that can prove your limited relationship I don't see how it can hurt you to help prove you're not involved as well as help them focus their attn where it needs to be. You've gotta ask yourself what he's been telling them all of this time. You may want to consider wiring yourself up and approaching him with concerns over your potential involvement thu the lease, if you get conversation with him teling you something along the lines of "sorry I did this on your land and how it made you look, I didn't mean to get you hung up in it, I know you didn't have anything to do with it." If you do anything like this make sure you do it face to face, not on the phone, and tape the whole conversation from arrival to departure.

If you are involved, even peripherally or just had some knowledge of what was going on talk to a lawyer. Be careful of him too. He can scare you into thinking you're a target when you're not even a second thought to the investigators just to soak you with alot of hours; he sees you as a paying client as opposed to someone he's doing court appointed work for (states pay slow) or someone who doesn't pay past the retainer. I don't care what people say I've seen people get screwed over by lawyers far more often than they have by the "system".
Link Posted: 9/23/2005 5:50:55 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/23/2005 5:53:59 AM EDT by Bowhntr6pt]

Originally Posted By FALSNARS:
You may want to consider wiring yourself up and approaching him with concerns over your potential involvement thu the lease, if you get conversation with him teling you something along the lines of "sorry I did this on your land and how it made you look, I didn't mean to get you hung up in it, I know you didn't have anything to do with it." If you do anything like this make sure you do it face to face, not on the phone, and tape the whole conversation from arrival to departure.



Better check your State law first. Many states have laws against recording "private conversations" unless the "recorded party" is advised that the conversation is being, or is subject to, recording.

Most folks harbor an "expectation of privacy" over their "private conversations".

Edited to add: Some laws that ban the recording of "personal conversations" DO NOT apply to "Law Enforcement" activities conducted during an investigation such as "Sting" type or "under cover" narcotics operations. Just for those who were wondering.
Link Posted: 9/23/2005 6:22:58 AM EDT

Originally Posted By jff24gordn:
Farmer J aint just a run of the mill guy, I also work on the side for him farming, hunt, shoot, fish, and cook out with his family. The crops on my land are 2/3 his, 1/3 mine. I figure they knocked down about enough for me to buy another evil black rifle.



Take the knocked down corn out of Farmer J's share. It was his pot, so the trampled corn should come out of his share.

Link Posted: 9/23/2005 7:39:49 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Oslow:
Someone could plant pot in a corn field without the farmer or land owner knowing about it; it has happened. But that is a lot of pot, I'm not buying the nobody knows nothing story in this case.

And the police aren't buying it either. I'd want to know what the police think about it. It seems you are all pissy at the LEOs for finding the pot; why aren't you all pissy at the people that planted the pot?

You need to talk to your insurance agent about the damage and you need to find a new tenant for your farm.



Ain't that the truth! I worked with a farmer who the cops found a whole bunch of pot growing in one of his corn fields. He had no idea it was in his field due to the location of the pot. Hell, I even worked with a guy who was pinned down by a helicoptor in his own pot! We even could see it from work! We were watching the helicopter and kidding each other, "Well, looks like they must have Txxx pinned down in his dope"! Ha Ha! We had no idea how right we were! The funny thing is that he lawyered up and got out of it without losing any of his constitutional right.



Vulcan94
Link Posted: 9/23/2005 11:00:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/23/2005 11:03:46 AM EDT by cheeks]
Get a lawyer. Bring the fight to them. He can file an injunction for them to disclose exactly WTF is going on. Farmer J might not be involved. Pot is almost always grown on others folks land. Put up your own deer cameras. If the GOV wants to know where deer cameras are, something is not in line here. If they are on the up and up, what does it matter what the guy catches on a camera.

Sounds like they found the pot and are pointing fingers because they are too dumb/ lazy to sit out and catch someone. That ends justifies the means crap does not cut it anymore. Tell Farmer J to get a lawyer. If you have any reason to suspect him in a dope ring, tell him to get screwed and never come back to your land.

ETA:
Be sure to get a video camera out and tape everyone next time they show up flexing their muscles. They hate cameras.
Link Posted: 9/23/2005 11:54:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/23/2005 11:58:42 AM EDT by NorCal_LEO]
Here in CA, it sounds like your problem falls under what are known as "open fields." Basically, an area of land open to public view, is considered by law to "implicitly invite" the police to observe and seize contraband at will. Reasonable expectation of privacy is basically nil in crop areas, thus no 4th amendment issues.

Federal law is very clear on aerial overflights being legal in publically open airspace, either random routine or directed (a tip) This applies to open fields AND yards/property, although the entry requirement vary.

As for damages, the DA can order restitution from your little buddy after his conviction.

NorCal
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