Pot plants worth $150K seized from Oakland Park home, authorities say

Broward sheriff's deputies seized 152 cannabis plants at an Oakland Park home after a search warrant was served early Tuesday, the agency said.

The confiscated plants, worth about $150,000, ranged in size from seedlings to 5 feet high. They were lined up beneath the carport as 20 deputies went through the residence.

"I've walked by that house every day since '09 and I never saw a person there," said Bri Hills, 60, who lives across the street. "I actually thought it was haunted, or a crime was committed there and that's why they couldn't rent it."

The residence is in the 4400 block of Northeast 16th Avenue and deputies were there about 7 a.m. One woman was in custody and the investigation was continuing, sheriff's spokeswoman Dani Moschella said on Tuesday.

The home is south of East Commercial Boulevard and west of North Federal Highway.

Hills is an avid bird watcher with binoculars who likes to observe an Oriole that lives in a tree in front of the targeted home.

On Tuesday morning, Hills said, "I was watching [the bird] and then I saw a bunch of cars in the street, then a lot of deputies."

She thought the deputies' arrival must have meant a body was inside because she saw they were wearing blue gloves.

"But then they started bringing out potted plants," Hills said. "And FP&L came and cut off the power."

A second person was detained and being questioned by the Broward sheriff's Oakland Park Crime Suppression Team, which has investigated the house for several weeks, Moschella said.

The white home with brown trim was being maintained.

Blinds and insulation covered some of the windows. Inside, five rooms held the plants that were beneath sodium vapor lamps and blowers that kept the lights cool. The plants had been watered by hand, Moschella said.

The woman who was arrested may face charges of cultivation of marijuana, trafficking in marijuana, possession of marijuana and possession with intent to sell, Moschella said.

The woman's name wasn't released Tuesday. She lives in a small apartment attached to the home and detectives saw her going into the side of the house where the plants were being cultivated, according to Moschella.

Scott Vandal echoed his neighbor Bri Hill's comments when he talked about the quiet house on the street.

"I hardly see anyone here," Vandal said. "You associate drug houses with people coming and going. It's a real shocker when you consider the neighborhood. It's insane this is happening right under our noses."

Ltrischitta@Tribune.com, 954-356-4233 or Twitter @LindaTrischitta

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