Sophisticated psilocybin mushroom bust

{gallery}/06_08_10/shroom{/gallery} An extended multi-agency investigation led to search warrants being served at three southern Oregon locations and the seizure of two sophisticated psilocybin mushroom growing operations and a large indoor marijuana growing operation.

According to Oregon State Police (OSP) Drug Enforcement Section Sergeant Jim Johnson, the Rogue Area Drug Enforcement (RADE) team and Medford Area Drug & Gang Enforcement (MADGE) team conducted a joint investigation into the Unlawful Distribution of Psilocybin Mushrooms in the southern Oregon area. “Collaboration between interagency drug teams and excellent detective work was paramount in the success of this investigation,” said Johnson. 

In all over 50 pounds of psilocybin mushrooms, two sophisticated psilocybin mushroom growing operations, 372 marijuana plants, a large indoor marijuana growing operation, a loaded handgun, over $5000 US Currency, and other items of evidentiary value were seized resulting from a multi-county narcotic investigation. One person was arrested and additional arrests are pending in the ongoing investigation involving federal, state and local investigators.

On June 2, 2010, RADE  executed a search warrant at a location in the 100 block of White Oak Drive, Cave Junction, OR. Located were items associated with False Application for Vehicle Registration.  The following items were seized at this location:

-50 pounds of processed and packaged psilocybin mushrooms -A loaded handgun, -Approximately 3 pounds of marijuana bud -Approximately $5000 US Currency -An elaborate indoor psilocybin mushroom growing operation

Arrested at the White Oak Drive location was BONNIE J. BURTON, age 39, from Cave Junction. BURTON was lodged in the Josephine County Jail on the listed charges:

2 Counts-Unlawful Possession of Marijuana
2 Counts-Unlawful Manufacture of Marijuana
2 Counts-Unlawful Delivery of Marijuana
2 Counts-Unlawful Possession of Psilocybin Mushrooms
2 Counts-Unlawful Manufacture of Mushrooms
2 Counts-Unlawful Delivery of Mushrooms
2 Counts-Endangering Welfare of a Minor
2 Counts-Child Neglect I
4 Counts-False Application for Vehicle Registration and False Swearing for Vehicle Registration
1 Count-Adult Using a Minor in the Commission of a Controlled Substance Offense

Information developed at the residence led to an additional search warrant for the property, as well as for two other locations. The two other search warrant locations were in the 200 block of Burch St, Cave Junction. At these locations investigators seized a large indoor marijuana growing operation and another sophisticated mushroom growing operation. Investigators seized the following evidence at the locations on Burch Street:

-372 marijuana plants
-packaging material
-16 grow lights
-packaged marijuana
-a car trailer (which contained an active marijuana growing operation) -psilocybin mushrooms

In total the seized psilocybin mushrooms have an estimated value of approximately $40,000 with an undetermined value on the un-harvested mushrooms. The total value potential from both of these growing operations is estimated in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Assisting in the execution of the search warrants and collection of evidence were detectives from MADGE, the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration, and evidence technicians from the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety and the Oregon State Police.

Anyone with information regarding suspicious drug activity or marijuana growing operations is encouraged to call the RADE tip line at (541) 955-6970.

The interagency narcotics RADE team is comprised of personnel from the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, Oregon State Police, Josephine County Sheriff’s Office, Josephine County District Attorney’s Office, and the Josephine County Community Corrections.

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