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Published April 09, 2012, 07:24 PM

Bemidji Man Pleads Guilty in Firearms, Marijuana Case

BEMIDJI - A Bemidji man who was caught growing marijuana in his garage last summer has pleaded guilty in Beltrami County District Court. Jason Earl Patch, 33, of Bemidji, pleaded guilty April 3 for a firearm violation and fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance, both felonies.

By: Bemidji Pioneer,

BEMIDJI - A Bemidji man who was caught growing marijuana in his garage last summer has pleaded guilty in Beltrami County District Court.

Jason Earl Patch, 33, of Bemidji, pleaded guilty April 3 for a firearm violation and fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance, both felonies.

His sentencing is set for May 29.

According to court documents, law enforcement officials were dispatched last June 16 to the 1500 block of Canopy Lane Southwest in Bemidji Township regarding a complaint last of gunshots fired and people yelling.

Although the officers did not find anyone outside the residence when they arrived, they saw an all-terrain vehicle parked by the house, with its engine still warm.

Officers knocked on the door of the residence, but no one responded. While looking around the property, officers saw several growing marijuana plants, as well as a marijuana growing operation in the garage.

A search warrant was obtained and officers returned to the property.

While searching the residence, officers found numerous small marijuana plants and several large marijuana plants. They also found small baggies that appeared to have methamphetamine residue in them. Officers conducted a field test, which showed the residue was methamphetamine.

In total, 300 grams of marijuana was found on the property.

Inside the residence, officers found a Springfield Armory 9 mm semi-automatic pistol which was loaded in both the magazine and chamber. Officers also found several other various pistols and bullets.

Patch is a convicted felon with previous convictions for burglaries, check forgery and racketeering. Based on his criminal history, Patch is not eligible to possess any firearm.

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