Pot Raid Target Defends Himself
Updated: Tuesday, July 16 2013, 04:08 PM EDT
A man arrested on drug charges says he has the documentation to prove he's legit.
Right off Fanning Bridge Road, you can see the growing operation in plain sight.
Sisters Sierra and Ariel nurture and sell 200 varieties of flowers.
"It feels like i'm actually letting something live," says Sierra.
But they girls say that serene setting was shaken last Thursday when they're dad Todd Stimson was investigated.
"i just heard them bust through the door," Ariel says. "They took my hands, were pointing guns at us."
"My two daughters were screaming, their two friends were screaming," Todd says, his voice trembling.
The raid targeted an organization cultivated on the same property. Fletcher police, the SBI, and Sheriff's department executed a search warrant. They seized nearly 75 marijuana plants with a street value of 180-thousand.
Stimson faces numerous charges, including manufacturing marijuana, possession with intent to sell, and maintaining a dwelling with intent to keep controlled substances.
Stimson claims what he's doing has been in public view for years. Online, he runs his "Blue Ridge Medical Cannabis Research Corporation" web site.
According to Stimson, he spent 12 thousand dollars acquiring tax stamps from the state for his pot plants.
"It is not legal in the state, but it does not make sense for the state to give you the tax stamps for the plant," Stimson tells us. "And then tell you that you can't grow it, that's unconstitutional."
The department of revenue web site says purchasing such stamps only fulfills a tax obligation. Even if you have the stamps, you're still in violation of NC criminal statutes for possessing the drugs.
Stimson still says authorities went overboard with their raid.
"The part that's so emotional is for what my daughters went through when they didn't deserve to go through that. "