Search Warrant Served on Illegal Marijuana Operation south of Junction City – The Lane County Sheriff’s Office recently received a tip regarding a large-scale illegal marijuana grow operation south of Junction City. Lane County Sheriff’s Deputies were granted a warrant to search the involved property in the 30000blk of Maple Ln. Authorities executed the warrant on 09/15/22 and seized approximately 8,000 illegal marijuana plants, 4,822 pounds of dried marijuana, processed concentrated marijuana products known as ‘BHO’ or ‘Butane Honey Oil’, nearly $50,000 in cash and $32,000 in silver. Authorities also seized a luxury vehicle that was believed to have been purchased using funds from the illegal operation. This illegal operation was located directly adjacent to the Willamette River. Included in the operation were numerous unpermitted structures, a swimming pool, and two separate unpermitted wells, all within the flood plain, which can have negative impacts on the environment when water levels rise. A typical marijuana plant uses approximately 1.5 gallons of water per day. A marijuana grow of this size could be illegally consuming approximately 12,000 gallons of water each day or 1,080,000 gallons over a 90-day period. The extent of the environmental impact from this illegal operation remains under investigation by Lane County Code Compliance officials and the Oregon State Watermaster’s Office, who were present during the execution of the search warrant. 50 year old Kevin John O’Donnell was issued citations in lieu of custody for Unlawful Manufacturing of Cannabinoid / Marijuana Items, and Unlawful Possession of Marijuana. This investigation was conducted by personnel funded through a grant from the Oregon Criminal Justice Commission. In 2018 and again in 2022, the Oregon State Legislature made funds available to local law enforcement agencies for the specific purpose of investigating these large-scale illegal marijuana manufacturing operations, including the health and safety impacts on the community. These include unsafe, unregulated working conditions, water stolen from the community, trash dumped on public lands, and dangerous chemicals used improperly. Butane Hash Oil (BHO) labs use volatile chemicals that create a significant explosion and fire hazard to anyone in the vicinity. Dangerous wiring and overloaded electrical systems also pose a significant fire risk. Without this funding, the Lane County Sheriff’s Office would not have the resources needed to investigate and stop these operations, including the resulting serious impact on our environment and communities.