Loading

76°F

74°F

80°F

75°F

80°F

75°F

76°F

71°F

80°F
NEWS STORIES

Take a Tour of the Oconto Marijuana Grow SiteSubmitted: 09/06/2012
Story By Lyndsey Stemm

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Last week we saw one of the biggest drug busts in state history. Agents found millions of dollars in marijuana in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest near the border of Oconto and Langlade Counties.

The Feds have given clearance for the media to trek out to the site. Newswatch 12's Lyndsey Stemm was there today to bring you an inside look.

We headed into the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest to take a look at some of the sites where law enforcement cleared more than 8,000 marijuana plants last week.

A mile deep into the forest, we toured a few of the grow sites law enforcement raided last week. It's the third bust in three years; all reported by citizens. A fisherman spotted this one.

"There were marijuana plants six to eight feet tall right here," says Jeff Seefeldt, a Ranger with the US Forest Service.

In the last two busts the sites were fewer, and much larger. They were easier to see from far away. This one had 22 smaller sites. It wouldn't have been as easily seen from the air, so it seems the growers are paying attention. Add that to 1.5 million acres of forest land--- and few rangers to cover it-- it makes for a tough fight.

"People are going here, and going there, but still I can't cover 350,000 acres," says Seefeldt.

When asked if he thinks it's possible that there are sites just like this somewhere else, he said, "Very possible. I believe that."

Since people working on these large-scale don't typically leave, they end up in makeshift shelters like the one we saw on our trip. All the garbage that accumulates over the months they're here just ends up in big piles.

So why grow here in the Northwoods, where the growing season is so short?

"One of the reasons we think they're here is the abundant water supply. As you've seen with these sites we're right along a river. We have a lot of lakes and rivers in the Northwoods. It's really remote, it's easy to get away from people and not be found in these parts," says Suzanne Flory, a Public Affairs Officer for the US Forest Service.

What rangers most want people to know is it's dangerous to stick around if you stumble upon a grow site.

"If you see something unusual, especially from spring through summer when the growers would be on site, make sure you just leave real quietly. These people have been found to be armed and dangerous," says Flory.

Authorities say you don't need an up close look to know if something is wrong out there. When you're out in a remote area, and a large patch of land is cleared with other plants in their place, leave immediately and contact your local forestry department.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 08/01/2014

- A 43-year-old Green Bay man killed himself after shooting at people in cars and leading police on a chase last week in Marinette County. Coming up on Newswatch 12, hear from a 911 call from a person shot at by the 43-year-old man, and see video of the dramatic chase.

- At least 116 thousand people with some type of dementia live in Wisconsin. More than half of them will wander at some point. A new tool could help their families find them. Find out what it is tonight on Newswatch 12.

- The Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce will welcome a new executive director later this month. Find out about Krystal Westfahl tonight on Newswatch 12.

- And a slow and shaky start to the summer growing season didn't hurt some farmers in Langlade County. That's because cooler temperatures can actually help some crops like peas. Newswatch 12's Karolina Buczek spoke with farmers in Langlade County to find out how successful their harvest was.

We'll have the details on those stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

+ Read More
Harley-Davidson resumes production of touring bikeSubmitted: 08/01/2014

STURGIS, SD - Harley-Davidson plans to resume sales of its most popular model.

The company says it will start selling two Road Glide touring models on Aug. 26 when its full 2015 lineup is released.

It's previewing the Road Glide and Road Glide Special on Friday at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota and the National Bikers Roundup in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

+ Read More
Man arrested after firing shots during domestic disturbance Submitted: 08/01/2014

SHAWANO COUNTY - Police in Shawano County needed to go in and get a man who fired shots early this morning.

At about 2:45 a.m., the sheriff's department got a report of a domestic disturbance in the village of Tigerton.

Reports were a 36 year old man was armed and fired a weapon multiple times with other people present.

Police made contact, but had to make a direct approach.

+ Read More
Sex offender releasedSubmitted: 08/01/2014

RHINELANDER - A man convicted of breaking into a 15-year old girl's basement and sexually assaulting her in 2011 will move to Rhinelander when he's released from prison.

26-year-old Jason L. Mullen will be released from prison August 5th. He'll move into a transitional living home in Rhinelander.

Mullen broke into a basement window of an Oneida County home. A 15-year-old girl he knew lived there. He told her he had a knife and sexually assaulted her. It turns out he didn't have a knife.

+ Read More
Barbeque lovers come to the northwoods this weekend for "Pig in the Pines"Submitted: 08/01/2014

ST. GERMAIN - In the south, you can find barbeque on every corner. Up here it's not that easy... But if you're craving it, you can head to Pig in the Pines this weekend.

It's the 10th annual year of the event in St. Germain. There are award winning ribs, live music and family friendly attractions to enjoy.

Barbeque lovers from across the midwest are drawn to Pig in the Pines...and of course everything is finger licking good.

"It does help the community," says St. Germain Chamber Director Penny Wiesmann. "It draws people from all over the Midwest. We have people talking about; this is their fourth or fifth annual year. The smells are incredible. You don't know where to go. You don't know if you should get ribs or pork or brisket or the corn. Try everything. Eat all day long."

+ Read More
UPDATE: Update: Incredible video & 911 call sheds light on Marinette County police chase & shootingSubmitted: 08/1/2014

MARINETTE COUNTY - New dash cam video from a police chase in Marinette County last Thursday afternoon shows just how dangerous the situation was for drivers on the road. 43-year-old Robb DeGroot of Green Bay was crossing lanes into traffic and also shooting at other cars along the way.

Audio released by the Marinette County Sheriff's Office shows the confusion and fear from drivers getting shot at by DeGroot.

"He just fired out the window again," said the Illinois man that called police about the July 25 incident.

DeGroot led police on a more than 20 minute chase in Marinette County. The caller told the dispatch officer that DeGroot was weaving between traffic.

+ Read More
UW Trout Lake Station holds open houseSubmitted: 08/01/2014

BOULDER JUNCTION - UW Trout Lake leaders want people to get interested in science.

They invited people to come out and see what it's like to be a researcher at the Trout Lake Station in Boulder Junction.

More than 230 people showed up to the open house.

People got the chance to go on a boat ride, learn about sampling and learn more about invasive species.

"The open house is a wonderful forum for us to be able to invite the community in and let them know what we're doing," says UW Trout Lake Station Director Tim Kratz. "Have a discussion about the kinds of research that we're doing on lakes, to hear the concerns or questions that people might have and just to enjoy a beautiful day on Trout Lake."

They also had activities for the kids.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here