Pot stashed in pumpkins

Published 2:59 am Saturday, October 6, 2012

A trick by a would-be drug trafficker turned into a treat for police Friday as officers found two pounds of marijuana stuffed inside two pumpkins.

Drug Task Force agent Greg Jackson, who also serves as the River Falls police chief, said the discovery is credited to Sheriff’s Deputy Paul Adams who noticed something “wasn’t quite right” about the Halloween staples.

Jackson said Adams pulled over the Lincoln LS driven by David Rondell Elliott, 46, of Marietta, Ga., while on U.S. Hwy. 84 at Debro Hill.

“Deputy Adams said the driver was acting pretty nervous and was evasive in answering his questions,” Jackson said. “(Adams) called for assistance from the River Falls Police Department, and when we arrived (Adams) said he could smell the odor of green marijuana.”

Jackson said the two, along with River Falls reserve officer Thomas Huggins, began to search the car and found the contraband in the back seat.

“Deputy Adams said, ‘There’s something not right about these pumpkins,’ and turned one of them over and found a cut out area on the bottom,” Jackson said. “He took his knife and easily pried the bottom open. Inside was a silver package, containing marijuana.”

The same practice was applied to the second pumpkin, which also revealed another silver package. In total, Jackson estimated two pounds of marijuana was seized. Its approximate street value is $3,200, he said.

“In my 16 years of law enforcement, I’ve seen some things, but this was a new one on me,” Jackson said. “Drug traffickers are basically trying to find unique ways to transport drugs, but thanks to the excellent work by a patrolman, these drugs won’t become a treat for anyone.”

Elliott was charged with possession of marijuana I and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was booked into the Covington County Jail and held on a $120,000 bond.