Rimbey RCMP seeks public’s assistance in uncovering neighbourhood grow-ops

  • Sep. 22, 2009 7:00 p.m.

Staff reporter

Rimbey RCMP are encouraging the public to be on the lookout for neighbourhood marijuana grow operations and have provided a few common signs to watch for.

“Alberta is not immune to the possibilities of marijuana grow ops occurring in residential and rural neighbourhoods,” said Sgt. Mark Groves. “In light of recent investigations involving alleged marijuana grow operations in the Rimbey area, it’s important that the public report any suspicious activities that might indicate a grow-op is underway.”

Groves said because grow operations are very secretive, activities associated with the production of marijuana are kept as clandestine as possible, however this can also lead to them being easily spotted.

Windows, particularly in the basement, that are darkened, boarded up or otherwise blackened out, excessive condensation on windows, the sound of electrical generators or electric fans and bright light escaping through small cracks or from doors are a strong indication of grow operations.

Additionally, strange odours, especially those similar to the spray of a skunk emanating from a house; unusual or out-of-the-ordinary garbage such as fertilizer containers or no garbage at all; houses that appear vacant with unkempt yards and flyers accumulating at the door; persistently entering and exiting a house through the garage at all hours of the day and night and occupants who move into a house during the night and generally keep to themselves are also things the public should be watching out for.

“The RCMP will continue to aggressively target individuals involved in illegal activities and will use every possible tool and agency available,” Groves added. “The RCMP wishes to remind those that are involved in criminal activity that any assets used to commit crime will be seized as offence related property.”

On Aug. 10, Rimbey RCMP busted one of the largest grow-ops in the province’s history when they discouvered 2,325 marihuana plants in various stages of growth at a rural location approximately 19 kilometres west of Rimbey.

“If any member of the public suspects a marijuana grow operation in their neighbourhood, they should contact us as soon as possible,” Groves added. “If they wish to remain anonymous, they can also contact Crime Stoppers with any information as well.”

Rimbey RCMP can be reached at (403) 843-2224 while Crime Stoppers can be reached at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).