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Facebook leads Unicoi County deputies to pot

September 1st, 2011 11:19 am by Brad Hicks

ERWIN — The posting of a Facebook picture of live marijuana plants led to charges being placed against two Unicoi County men for their involvement in a marijuana growing operation, according to the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department.
On Tuesday, investigators with the UCSD confiscated a marijuana patch in the Coffee Ridge community. In all, 21 plants were seized with the plants ranging from 4 to 18 feet in height.
According to a release from the UCSD, the investigation into the marijuana plot began after Jerry Dwane Duncan, 24, 239 Viss Honeycutt Road, posted a picture of live marijuana plants on his Facebook page. Investigators Maj. Mike Hensley and Sgt. Frank Rogers monitored the posting and initiated an investigation into the possible manufacture of marijuana, according to the release.
Hensley, Rogers, K-9 Officer Nick Hughes and Lt. Jimmy Erwin converged on the growing operation and found the marijuana had been recently harvested, according to the release. It also states the marijuana, which had completed its growing cycle, was collected from various “hidden” locations on the property.
Officials also said evidence found at the scene supported the involvement of Jerry Wayne Honeycutt, 50, also of 239 Viss Honeycutt Road, in the operation.
Duncan and Honeycutt were both charged with conspiracy to manufacture a controlled substance. They are scheduled to appear in Unicoi County Sessions Court on Jan. 19.
“Although everybody who uses the social networking site Facebook is not a criminal, other investigations are ongoing where Facebook is providing investigators with intelligence into the criminal intent of many drug violators,” the UCSD release states.
Unicoi County residents are asked to report drug violations to the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department and can do anonymously by calling 743-1855 or by calling Rogers at 388-0320. Reports may also be made via email at unicoinarcs@yahoo.com.

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