Tuesday May 31 2011
Michigan speeding stop turns into 14-pound pot bust for Auburn man
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
Third out-of-state arrest since November of an Auburnite for alleged big-ticket pot transportation
An Auburn man was arrested on Interstate 94 in Southwestern Michigan after a traffic stop for speeding yielded 14 pounds of bagged marijuana, as well as prescription drugs and illegal steroids. Thursday’s arrest is the third in recent months in a distant state involving at least two different Auburn man and charges of transporting marijuana. The latest arrest took place Thursday afternoon in Calhoun County’s Sheridan Township. The driver of the vehicle – a 30-year-old Auburn man who remained unidentified at press time – was taken into a custody after a sheriff’s drug-sniffing dog was walked around the vehicle and indicated the presence of drugs inside, Capt. Matthew Saxton said Tuesday. Deputies discovered the 14 pounds of marijuana and other drugs wrapped in a sleeping bag, Saxton said. Also in the vehicle was a 31-year-old man from Desert Hot Springs, Calif., who told deputies that he owns a medicinal marijuana-growing business in California called Green Giant Hydroponics, he said. Deputies were also informed that the two were traveling to the Detroit area from California with marijuana they estimated was worth between $60,000 and $80,000 in Michigan, Saxton added. The two were arrested on suspicion of delivering marijuana, possession of prescription narcotics and possession of illegal steroids. In November, Robert L. Shipley, 57, was arrested in Lancaster County, Neb. with a reported 41 pounds of marijuana in a U-Haul cargo area after being pulled over by a state trooper for speeding. And in late March, Bradley Gerald Harsh, 43, was stopped for speeding in his rented Kia Sorento SUV on Interstate 70, near Castle Dale, Utah. Acting on a noticeable smell inside the vehicle of marijuana, a search turned up 75 pounds of pot in large plastic bags and charges that include felony possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. Robert L. Shipley is not to be confused with contractor Robert Franklin Shipley, 45, also of Auburn.