Man arrested on pot-growing charge

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A 22-year-old Steamboat Springs man was arrested Tuesday morning on suspicion of growing 14 marijuana plants in his Walton Pond Apartments home.

The Grand, Routt and Moffat Narcotic Enforcement Team arrested Ryan William Wheaton after receiving a Crime Stoppers tip that he was cultivating marijuana, Steamboat Springs police Capt. Joel Rae said.

Following up on the tip, GRAMNET obtained a search warrant for Wheaton's apartment in the 800 block of Weiss Drive. When the door to the apartment was open, officers could smell an overwhelming odor of marijuana, Rae said.

A search of the apartment netted 14 marijuana plants being grown throughout the apartment. GRAMENT also found drug paraphernalia, Rae said.

Rae said there was no indication in the apartment that Wheaton intended to distribute the marijuana.

Wheaton was arrested on suspicion of manufacturing marijuana, a felony, as well as possessing marijuana, possessing drug paraphernalia and possessing a Schedule 2 substance. Rae said when officers searched the residence, GRAMNET also found cocaine residue.

Wheaton was released from jail Tuesday on a $5,000 bail and is scheduled to appear in Routt County Court at 8:30 a.m. Jan. 4.

-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com

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