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Man charged in marijuana drug arrest

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Albany/HV: Man charged in marijuana drug arrest
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A man was arrested on drug charges in a raid Friday morning after the Sullivan County Sheriff's Department found more than 150 marijuana plants. Our Eva McKend was at the scene and has more on the arrest.

MAMAKATING, N.Y -- Residents of Ministers Flats Road never thought they would be waking up to a drug raid.

Casper’s Deli manager Jim Zaimes was surprised to learn his neighbor, George Johnson, was arrested on charges of criminal possession of marijuana.

“I’ve got a convenience store right down the road here and they were customers of mine. I had no idea,” Zaimes said.

It was a surprising blow for the rural Sullivan County community on Friday as residents learned their neighbor David Johnson, 33, was charged with growing and selling marijuana from his home.

"You wouldn’t know that your neighbor does something like that behind closed doors," said Brittany Kless.

Kless shares a cousin with the accused and said someone close to him must have tipped off the authorities.

Working with a confidential source during a four month investigation, the Sullivan County Sheriff's office found more than 150 marijuana potted plants inside Johnson's home.

"There’s an out building adjoining the property where he ran a 100 amp service and had his grow lights and all the equipment necessary to grow and manufacture marijuana," said Undersheriff Eric Chaboty.

Sheriff Deputies say Johnson was growing more than $50,000 worth of marijuana. His girlfriend and his two-year-old son lived in the house adjacent to the alleged growing plant.

Johnson was also charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Police recovered a weapon at the scene, but no weapon charges were filed. He is currently being held in Sullivan County Jail and will face his bail hearing on Tuesday. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP