Pot Grown Above Preschool, Police Say

James Pastman charged with felony manufacturing/delivery of cannabis

By BJ Lutz
|  Thursday, Jan 7, 2010  |  Updated 8:15 PM CDT
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Pot Grown Above Preschool, Police Say

Police say the plants and seeds found in the apartment were valued at about $6,000.

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A Northwest Side man was charged Wednesday with running an elaborate cannabis growing operation inside his apartment located above a preschool.

James Pastman, 50, was charged with one count of felony manufacturing and delivery of cannabis within 1,000 feet of a school, police said.  He lives above Sauganash Montessori School in the 5700 block of N. Rogers Avenue.

Officers were patrolling in the area Wednesday when they saw a front window of an apartment building open and heard a dog barking, police said.

Officers walked into the building and smelled a strong odor in the hallway, which became overwhelming as they approached the apartment door, the release said.

Pastman answered his door and spoke with the officers.  He admitted he was growing pot and allowed officers to search his apartment, police said.

Inside, officers discovered that Pastman had setup an elaborate system for growing marijuana, consisting of irrigation, lighting and ventilation mechanisms, the release said.

Plants and seeds found in the apartment were valued at about $6,000 police said.

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