By Meg Peters
A Lake Orion resident turned himself in to the Lake Orion Police Department after officers found 130 medical marijuana plants, 94 more than he was legally permitted, at his home on Lake Shore Drive.
The plants were found after LOPD officers entered the house with a search warrant on March 22. According to the police report the plants were not properly enclosed in a locked facility.
William Russell Davis, 46, was arraigned at the 52/3 District Court Monday, April 11, under one count of “Controlled Substance—Delivery/Manufacture 5-45 Kilograms of Marijuana, or 20-200 plants, a seven-year felony with a maximum $500,000 fine.”
Although a licensed caregiver for the State of Michigan, Davis allegedly was not adhering to the state law, the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, or the Lake Orion Medical Marihuana Ordinance.
“He was charged by the Oakland County Prosecutors Office for violating state law, our local ordinance just helped lead us to the discovery,” Narsh said.
Police first investigated Davis’ home when a code enforcement officer noticed abandoned vehicles outside of it March 18.
During a code violation investigation the officer noticed an “overwhelming odor of marijuana emanating from the home,” according to police reports, which prompted police to return to the home and speak to the homeowner.
According to the report, Davis said he was a caregiver who was growing medical marijuana for three patients. Up to 12 plants may be grown per patient, and another 12 may be grown if the caregiver is a patient himself.
Davis, who is not a patient, was advised by officers to register his operation with the Village of Lake Orion, according to requirements of the local ordinance.
Per the police report, Davis did not comply.
Officers seized the plants after acquiring the search warrant and released Davis pending the issuance of an arrest warrant.
After turning himself in, Davis was arraigned before Magistrate Melinda Balian and released on a $25,000 personal bond. His next preliminary exam before 52/3 Judge Julie Nicholson is set for April 25.
Chief Narsh said the LOPD and Village of Lake Orion requires that anyone operating as a caregiver in the village to immediately register with the Village of Lake Orion Clerk Susan Galeczka.
The village’s Medical Marihuana Ordinance became effective December 23, 2015, and may be viewed on the village website, lakeorion.org.
The local ordinance restricts all primary caregiver operations to the CC Commercial Corridor Zoning District in a site with frontage on M-24. Registered primary caregivers must be located 1,000 feet from any other registered caregiver sites, and not more than one primary caregiver can inhabit any single parcel, according to the ordinance.
A qualifying patient may cultivate their own medical marijuana in the following residential village zones: RV Village One Family, RL Lake One family, and RM Multiple Family Dwelling, and only in a single family detached dwelling, according to the local ordinance.
By Meg Peters