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December 22, 1997

Local News

Marijuana grow-operation found in burning house

bothfire

   Andrew Walgamott/staff photo
  
Bothell Fire and EMS crews battling a house fire near Canyon Park were pulled back from flames and smoke when the home was discovered to contain 129 marijuana plants. Efforts continued shortly after the photo was taken.

  
   by Andrew Walgamott
BOTHELL--Firefighters battling a house fire near Canyon Park Wednesday afternoon found a marijuana growing operation in the first floor of the three-level structure. Bothell police were called to the house at the end of a long private road and began investigating the scene when the smoke cleared. Capt. Bob Woolverton said 129 marijuana plants had been confiscated from two bedrooms of the house which is in the 23000 block of 35th Ave. S.E. He estimated street value at between $60,000 and $129,000. He said that while properly cultivated plants went for $1,000 apiece on the street, the growers set-up "was not a sophisticated grow-operation."
  
   Police have two suspects in mind but have made no arrests. Two halide "grow-lamps" and six "starter" plants were also confiscated. Starter plants upstairs were consumed by flames. "This sort of thing discovered during a house fire is rare," Woolverton said. Nobody was home at the time of the fire. A neighbor alerted fire crews.