BODEGA BAY- On August 17, 2021, California State Parks peace officers uncovered an illegal cannabis grow site within Sonoma Coast State Park. In Upper Willow Creek, the peace officers found that water was being diverted by illegal growers from a creek and channeled into several large pits lined with tarps. It is believed the creek water from these man-made wells was used to water cannabis plants within the grow site. The site included 1,500 plants and about 1,000 pounds of trash, including fertilizer, rodenticides, a generator, gasoline and plastic irrigation lines. Additionally, dozens of trees were also cut down by the growers to create a clearing for the cannabis plants.
Two suspects were arrested and booked into the Sonoma County Jail, charged with illegal cannabis cultivation, water diversion and possession of a loaded firearm.
“Our California State Park rangers are a welcomed site among state park users. They protect people, property and the natural resources that make our state so enjoyable,” said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. “Having armed individuals who are damaging public land to illegally grow cannabis in our state parks demonstrates the need for law enforcement and public safety professionals in within our state parks.”
Cleanup of the site is being scheduled by State Parks.