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Officers locate 57 marijuana plants

March 16, 2011

A couple was charged Monday with manufacturing marijuana after officers saw the plants through the window of the couple's home.

Tona Marie Lail and Dustin Ray Matheson are accused of manufacturing marijuana and using their house on Lynell Street to grow the plants, according to Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid.

Catawba County sheriff's deputies arrived Monday at 2360 Lynell Street to serve an order for arrest on Donald Ray Matheson for nonsupport.

Reid said he doesn't know how Dustin and Donald are related, but it's possible the two are brothers.

As deputies searched for Donald, they looked through the home's windows and saw marijuana plants.

"They could see (the plants) in plain view," Reid said.

Deputies requested assistance from the Catawba County Narcotics Division, and they obtained a search warrant for the property.

Officers executed the search warrant and discovered 56 marijuana plants and "grow tents."

Reid said the grow tents look like clothes hampers and maintain a moist environment, which is optimal when growing marijuana.

Deputies discovered a child was living in the residence, and they alerted the Catawba County Department of Social Services. Reid said Lail and Dustin are the child's parents, and DSS is investigating the incident.

Neither Lail nor Dustin are listed as inmates in the Catawba County jail. They are charged with one count each of manufacturing a schedule IV controlled substance and manufacturing in a vehicle, dwelling or other place.

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