Grower and Karuk Tribe Collide Over Marijuana on Ceremonial Dance Grounds

Humboldt County Sheriff’s Press Release:

On 04-29-2014, at approximately 8:30 a.m., the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office received a call from Karuk Tribal members who reported they located a man trying to grow marijuana on their Ceremonial Dance grounds located off Camp Creek Road, Orleans. The tribal members were detaining the man waiting for Sheriff’s Deputies to arrive.

 When deputies arrived they met with the Tribal Members and the 38 year old male suspect from McKinleyville. The tribal members told the deputies they found the man attempting to cultivate numerous marijuana plants on their Ceremonial Dance grounds. Deputies determined the land where the Dance Grounds were located, is owned by a person who resides out of the area. The Tribal members were allowed to use the property for their Ceremonial Dances. 

When interviewed, the suspect told the deputies he was in the process of purchasing the property and it was in escrow. The suspect told the deputies he was growing the marijuana for medical reasons and had a medical marijuana recommendation. The deputies told the suspect he was trespassing, as he did not own the property yet, and was out of compliance for medical marijuana based upon their investigation. Deputies located and seized 615 growing marijuana plants, which were approximately two feet tall and all being grown in plastic pots. The suspect was directed by the deputies to clean up the grow equipment on the site. Deputies are seeking a warrant for the suspects arrest for trespassing, cultivation of marijuana and possession of marijuana for sale. 

Anyone with information for the Sheriffs Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Sheriffs Office at 707-445-7251 or the Sheriffs Office Crime Tip line at 707-268-2539.


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