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W.Va. man charged with 333 counts of growing pot

September 02, 2004|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - A Shepherdstown, W.Va., man was charged Tuesday with 333 counts of manufacturing a controlled substance after West Virginia State Police were tipped off Monday about a large marijuana-growing operation at the man's home, court records say.

Steven Andrew Gould, 48, of 174 Byer Lane, was free on $250,000 bond, court records say.

Byer Lane is off W.Va. 45 near the Berkeley County line.

Four other people were charged with cultivation of marijuana this week as the marijuana harvest season gets under way, police said.

The case involving Gould started when state police received information from a confidential informant, Jefferson County Magistrate Court records state.

A group of troopers and sheriff's deputies from Berkeley and Jefferson counties searched Gould's home. In a garage, they found 333 individual marijuana stems in potting containers, records allege.

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Several ounces of marijuana, a large commercial-grade scale, two large boxes of marijuana seeds, fertilizer and other items also were found, court records state.

On Monday, two Hedgesville, W.Va., residents were charged after police found 13 pounds of marijuana plants dumped in a wooded area near their home, court records say. Police went to the home after an informant told a Berkeley County Sheriff's deputy about an indoor growing operation at the house.

Vickie Marie Fox, 33, and Keith Gregory Springer, 29, both of 1217 Haymaker Road, each were charged with one count of cultivation of marijuana, one count of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, one count of conspiracy to cultivate marijuana and one count of conspiracy to distribute marijuana.

On Wednesday Christopher Scheidegger, 36, P.O. Box 864, Shepherdstown, was charged with cultivation of marijuana after Trooper S.R. Smith entered a shed at a home off Song Lane in Jefferson County and found what appeared to be an "indoor marijuana grow," according to court records.

Song Lane is off Duncan Road in the Bakerton, W.Va., area.

Mary Elise Thompson, 41, P.O. Box 864, also was charged with cultivation of marijuana in the case, court records state.

This is the time of year when marijuana is typically harvested, Jefferson County Sheriff Everett "Ed" Boober said.

When police find one marijuana-growing operation, they often are tipped off about others, Boober said.

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