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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Surveillance leads to drug bust

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Northern Putnam County marijuana patches link back to two Indianapolis growers who were arrested Tuesday afternoon.

Early in the summer, the sheriff's department, along with the state police, were investigating several significant marijuana patches around Putnam County, especially in the northern portion.

Surveillance video cameras were installed in several of the patches, in the hopes of catching the growers in action. Investigators were able to view two of the growers working the patches, but they were unable to identify them.

But they caught a lucky break when the growers were identified by Russellville Town Marshal and Det. Mike Biggs, who had learned the growers' names after an unrelated traffic stop.

The growers, Chris Carlson, 40, and Robert Breskow, 45, both of Marion County, had been seen on the video visiting the patches several times. A search warrant was issued, and investigators were able to place a tracking device on the suspects' vehicle. The vehicle was tracked going to the patches and a residence at 940 W. Banta Rd., Indianapolis.

According to Sheriff Mark Frisbie, the case was still under investigation, because the investigators wanted to see if the patches would be harvested.

Prosecutor Tim Bookwalter told the BannerGraphic that they threw the growers a little string.

Tuesday afternoon, the sheriff's department, along with the state police and state conservation officers, issued search warrants on Graham's home and arrested five suspects linked to multiple marijuana patches throughout Putnam Coun-ty and surround counties.

Frisbie said the suspects were growing the marijuana in rural areas, and then bringing them back to the home for processing. Bookwalter said that suspects were bringing in plants from a total of 13 counties.

During the search of the home, investigators discovered 1,000 well grown plants drying and awaiting to be processed. The estimated dollar amount for the plants that were found was $1 million. "They hit the motherload," said Bookwalter.

Frisbie was pleased with the success of the bust, and how well everybody worked together to catch the suspects.

Bookwalter said the county is planning on charging Carlson and Breskow with growing more than 10 pounds of marijuana, a Class C felony. But according to Biggs, there might be a small glitch on the custody of the suspects. Biggs is attempting to have Carlson and Breskow extradited to Putnam County for the charges here.

Bookwalter said that Marion County prosecutors might charge Carlson and Breskow for crimes there, but it was undetermined at presstime.

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