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Pair Fails to Bury Alleged Pot Farms Before Cops Arrive; 1,400 Plants, $9K Seized in 2 Raids

The evidence that led to the two Sonoma County warrant searches was obtained after a traffic stop on Hwy 101, police said.

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.
Evidence gleaned from a routine traffic stop led to two men being arrested as they hastily tried burying their marijuana-growing enterprises outside Petaluma and in the Monte Rio-Guerneville area last week, according to Rohnert Park police.

An officer conducted a vehicle stop for a traffic violation on U.S. Highway 101 around 1 p.m. Tuesday, police said, and the driver, later identified as 34-year-old Daren Van Dyke, was found with evidence related to an alleged marijuana grow and trafficking operation.

The officer released Van Dyke and obtained a search warrant for his arrest, police said. Officers went to Van Dyke's residence on Chapman Lane west of Petaluma and secured the home as the warrant was pending approval, according to police.

Arriving officers found Van Dyke at the back of the residence digging into dirt, police said. With the search warrant, Van Dyke was detained and officers conducted an investigation uncovering a large marijuana grow operation in the home and garage, according to police.

A total of 1,080 marijuana plants and 60 pounds of processed marijuana buds packaged in various amounts were discovered, police said. The buds were found in a manger at a sheep field at the property that appeared to be hastily concealed, according to police.

Officers also recovered more than a pound of marijuana hash, more than $9,000 in cash and numerous items linked to marijuana cultivation and sales, police said.

Van Dyke was arrested and booked into Sonoma County Jail for allegedly cultivating marijuana and possessing marijuana for the purpose of sales.

With evidence obtained from Van Dyke's home, police said that on Wednesday  they arrested a Larkfield man for suspicion of cultivating marijuana.

A search warrant was issued for a residence on Main Street in Monte Rio near Guerneville -- associated with the grow operation discovered in the Petaluma area the previous day, according to police.

Arriving officers reportedly found 34-year-old Ismael Figueroa Chavez digging holes into the yard with a large tractor burying marijuana plants and growing equipment, police said.

A search of the home resulted in the seizure of an alleged 380 marijuana plants, in addition to processed marijuana packaged for sales, according to police.

Chavez purportedly was told by 69-year-old Carl Van Dyke, Daren's father, to disassemble and bury the marijuana grow, police said.

Chavez was arrested and booked into Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of cultivating marijuana and possessing marijuana for the purpose of sales, police said.

Charges are sought against Carl Van Dyke, according to law enforcement.

--Bay City News contributed to this report.
Rock Fan April 07, 2014 at 12:41 AM
Oh good , more taxpayer dollars to stamp out the evil weed .
TRUST NOT BIG BANKS April 07, 2014 at 04:02 PM
Justice!
TT April 07, 2014 at 07:14 PM
Chapman Lane = where I live

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