Electricity discrepancy leads to pot bust in Ecorse

Nicquel Terry
The Detroit News

Law enforcement officials busted an illegal marijuana grow operation in Ecorse on Thursday after DTE Energy discovered the house was stealing electricity.

DTE’s Chief Security Officer Michael Lynch said crews were tipped off when they pulled the electric meter at the house on the 4000 block of Tenth Street two weeks ago yet everything in the house was still running.

Lynch said DTE immediately alerted Detroit police who obtained a search warrant and found the grow operation inside the house.

The house had stolen $7,000 worth of electricity in the last few months, Lynch said, adding that DTE does not have a registered customer at that address.

Stealing electricity or receiving stolen electricity are both felonies.

The grow operation in Ecorse was also a fire hazard because it was using more electricity than the ranch-style house could sustain, Lynch said.

Marijuana grow operations typically use several lamps for artificial light and constantly run air conditioners to keep the space cool.

“It’s a huge load on electricity in an otherwise modest house,” Lynch said. “It’s more than what it’s designed for.”

It is unclear if charges have been filed yet. The case is being handled by the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, Lynch said.