SACRAMENTO COUNTY (CBS13) – A manhunt is underway for a dozen suspects who scattered after investigators uncovered their illegal pot growing operation in Sacramento County.
Authorities are calling the discovery one of the largest marijuana grows discovered in our area in years.
“We were tipped off,” said California Department of Fish and Game spokesperson Andrew Hughan.
After that tip, wardens responded to section of the Cosumnes Wildlife Preserve near Galt where around 12 suspects immediately scattered, sparking a massive manhunt.
“We’re very experienced at this, at looking for people especially in our wildlife areas, so we expect more arrests later in the evening,” said Hughan.
They would arrest one man at the scene described as a 25-year-old who had a gun.
“Usually it’s quiet out here; there’s not anybody around,” said a nearby resident who didn’t want to be identified.
The unidentified man says he lives and works on a vineyard that borders the preserve and had no idea what was going on until law enforcement descended on the farmland.
“These are typically very well-funded, very well organized cartel grows from Mexico, and they do shoot first because they will protect their crop,” said Hughan.
With more than 10,000 plants and counting, authorities are now searching for those who are on the run.