Officer Harmed By Booby Trap During Marijuana Investigation

A burglary at a grow house will mean breaking and entering charges, and possibly more!


A Wyoming, Michigan police officer was recently harmed by a booby trap in Kent County.  While responding to a burglar alarm at a medical marijuana growing operation the office fell victim to the booby trap. He will be on crutches for weeks, authorities say. As for the man who set the booby traps – prosecutors aren’t sure if he can be charged with a crime.


If there is one thing marijuana growers can agree on, whether they are growing legally in Michigan or not, it’s that secrecy is the best form of security. Once word gets out that marijuana is being grown in a home, that building automatically becomes a target for thieves and opportunists. For many growers, the solution to this has been to enhance security in any way possible. For some, this includes the use of booby traps.


According to Wyoming, MI police Chief James Carmody, some of his officers were responding to a burglar alarm at a house, when one of the officers was harmed by a booby trap. The home owner had attempted to protect his weed growing operation by placing boards on the ground inside his fence, with three inch decking screws sticking up.


Officer Dustin Cook jumped a fence in Kent County and landed on the homemade trap, impaling his feet with the decking screws. Chief Carmody says that one screw pierced the officer’s heel in one foot, while the other two screws entered the other foot, one going right into the arch of the foot and damaging the tendon.


This situation will result in multiple criminal charges


The responding officers caught both of the young men who had broken into the marijuana grow operation, which has resulted in criminal charges. Tyquan K. Hassel and Andre D. Sims, both 19-year-olds from the Kentwood area, have been charged with Breaking and Entering a Building. In Michigan, this is punishable by up to 10 years in prison. In addition, Hassel has been charged with a single count of Carrying a Concealed Weapon, which is a felony punishable in Michigan by up to five years in prison.


If the Wyoming, MI police department has anything to say about it, the two men caught breaking into the marijuana grow operation won’t be the only ones facing charges. However, the Kent County Prosecutor’s Office is having difficulty figuring out which charge to apply in this case. Under Michigan law, booby-traps described as spring-loaded devices or explosives are illegal. However a bed of nails isn’t covered by the law.


Although, while prosecutors may not find a way to charge the homeowner for the booby trap, police reports show that there were more than 90 marijuana plants growing on the property. This exceeds what a legal medical marijuana grower may have at one time under Michigan law, so it is very likely that the grower, is going to end up facing drug charges despite being licensed to grow.


Michigan has very specific laws governing the growing of medical marijuana. Just having an up-to-date caregiver’s card is not enough to make a grower legal. There are strict limits to how many plants a grower may have at one time, and how much product they are entitled to possess. Violating these laws can result in harsh penalties. This is where experienced drug crime attorneys come in.


The skilled attorneys at The Kronzek Firm have many years of experience defending the people of mid-Michigan against drug related crimes. Whether it’s heroin, cocaine, meth, prescription drugs or marijuana, we have a long track record of success and can help you. Call us today at 866-766-5245. We are here to help you.

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