On October 6, 2021 Klamath County Fire District #1 crews were dispatched to a location in the 4000 block of Highway 39 in Klamath Falls on reports of smoke being seen from a building.
Upon arrival KCFD1 crews called for law enforcement and Klamath County Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to the scene and discovered a large marijuana processing facility.
Investigators worked throughout the next several days to inventory the contents of a large building approximately 27,000 sq. ft in size.
This building contained conservatively over $100,000,000.00 of partially processed and unprocessed marijuana believed destined for markets in other states.
Sheriff Chris Kaber states: “I have managed drug teams and worked in law enforcement for over thirty years and I’ve never seen anything like this. We believe this was a facility that was central to processing for many of the illegal grows in the area.”
This building was equipped with drying and packaging equipment in addition to numerous code violations for electrical, health and safety. Additional information collected at this location led investigators to locations in the 11500 block of Springlake Road and the 8300 block of Elliott Rd where thousands of additional pounds of processed and drying product were destroyed.
Sheriff Kaber further states: “We believe we’ve disrupted the operations of this group of organized criminals in a very significant way. Beyond the illegal nature of these facilities, this also represents many millions of gallons of water used for this illegal activity at a time of extreme drought when many people don’t have water for even basic necessities.
Sheriff Kaber said he will be asking the District Attorney to pursue forfeiture of the property on highway 39 as well as stepping up forfeiture action of future sites to discourage this activity. People need to understand that they are ultimately responsible for what happens on their property, even if they rent or lease it to other people who use it illegally.”
Klamath County Sheriff Chris Kaber would like to thank Commissioner Donnie Boyd for his personal involvement as well as the following entities for their assistance on this incident:
Klamath County Board of Commissioners
Klamath County Fire District #1
Klamath County Community Development Solid Waste Division Klamath County Public Works
Klamath County Code Enforcement
Klamath Falls Police Department
Oregon State Police
Basin Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team (BINET)
The Reserve Deputies and Volunteers of KCSO
The Entire KCSO team who worked many hours of overtime
Residents in the area around the shed report that they could smell a strong odor of marijuana in the neighborhood beginning about this time last fall. It is possible this illegal operation has been going on for over a year or more.
Featured photo is the shed where the drying and packing operation was discovered with KCC in the background. Photo by Klamath Alerts. Remaining photos (below) provided by KCSO.