JOHNSTON, R.I. (WPRI) -- Two Johnston men are under arrest and facing drug and weapons charges after a State Police raid Friday.
According to the State Police, the investigation began Wednesday when police in California intercepted a package containing eight pounds of marijuana, addressed to a home on Plainfield Street in Johnston. The package was handed over to the Rhode Island State Police, and with the help of the Johnston Police Department, police delivered the package to the Johnston home Friday at about noon.
A man who signed for the package was immediately arrested and upon searching the home the officers noticed a large marijuana growing operation in the home's basement. Investigators found 100 plants and 15 pounds of packaged marijuana, along with an ounce of hallucinogenic mushrooms, nearly $8,000 in cash, two rifles, a shotgun and three handguns.
While officers were still there, the homeowner arrived; State Police tell Eyewitness News that the man had a valid state-issued medical marijuana caregiver's card. Since there were far more plants being grown in the home than legally allowed, he was also arrested.
Eyewitness News cameras were rolling as investigators took bins full of marijuana plants out of the home Friday afternoon; neighbors said the two men who lived there kept to themselves and "never bothered anybody."
The homeowner, 49 year-old David Lashus, is being charged with possession of marijuana in excess of 5 kilos, possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, possessing a firearm during a crime of violence, and possession of hallucinogens. He was ordered held without bail at the ACI until his arraignment on November 13th. The man who signed for the package, 21 year-old Aaron Lashus, was charged with possession of marijuana and released pending a future court appearance.