SOUTH BEND — It was an armed robbery right out of a Cheech and Chong movie.
When police responded to a report of a home invasion in the 5000 block of West Scenic Drive shortly before midnight Tuesday, the victims claimed a vaporizer and a stash of marijuana had been stolen along with video games, plasma TVs, jewelry and cash.
Then the officers stumbled on a room inside the home that turned the tables on the apparent victims — a growhouse full of hydroponic marijuana plants.
“(Police) discovered a grow operation and called the narc squad,” South Bend Police Capt. Phil Trent said.
The victims, three brothers, told police they were watching television about 11:40 p.m. Tuesday when “three or four males” showed up inside the home, one of whom was brandishing a gun.
“They were calling (one of the victims) by his first name like they knew him,” Trent said.
While one of the intruders held a gun on the brothers, the others “cleaned out” the home of personal possessions.
Among the stolen items the brothers listed included: five video games, a computer, a Samsung telephone, an iPhone, a wallet with personal credentials, a watch and $400 cash.
The victims also told police the intruders took a quantity of marijuana and a vaporizer smoking apparatus.
A search of the home revealed the grow operation.
Police confiscated “evidence of a grow operation,” Trent said, seizing containers of chemicals used to grow marijuana, light fixtures, marijuana seedlings and several marijuana plants.
No arrests were made, but the victims may eventually be facing charges.
“We might be forwarding evidence to the prosecutor’s office,” Trent said.
The victims claimed they did not know the intruders, nor did they see them flee the home, police said.
Staff writer Jeff Harrell: