By Steve Elliott
A brother and sister who were caught with 12 marijuana plants and eight seedlings inside their home have been sentenced to a total of 37 years in prison.
Natlie DePriest and David DePriest each received 15 years, the harshest possible sentence which can be given for cannabis cultivation in Missouri, reports Daniel Miller at the Daily Mail. The maximum punishment for manslaughter in Missouri is also 15 years.
A maintenance man entered the DePriests' home in the city of Farmington, Missouri, in 2001, in order to "fit a fire extinguisher" while they were out, and photographed what he thought was a "pipe bomb" on the counter.
He informed the police, showing them the pictures, and they conducted a search, considering the photos probable cause. They found the marijuana plants inside a bedroom closet, along with three pounds of dried cannabis, a rifle which was a quarter-inch shorter then the legal limit, two legal pistols and two bulletproof vests.
They also found ledgers they claimed contain sales record totaling up to $8,000 a month. The "pipe bomb," basis of the entire search, turned out to be no such thing, and harmless.