UPDATED: Marijuana 'Grow Room' Found at Fire

One firefighter transported to Winchester Hospital during Tuesday evening's fire.


Friday, Sept. 7, 4:02 p.m.—

According to new information obtained by Woburn Patch, the property owner of 248 Salem St., where the fire occured on Tuesday, is James Fitzpatrick and not the business located at the site. Fitzpatrick told Woburn Patch Friday that a tenant is currently at 248 Salem St. and he "has nothing to do with [the home]." 

Thursday, Sept. 6, 10:01 a.m.—

 While investigating the cause of, reported finding a marijuana "grow room" at the Salem Street home.  

According to police, officers were called to 246 Salem St. at 5:43 p.m. Tuesday night for a report of a fire. The first officer on scene reported the home, located at 248 Salem St., was "fully engulfed in flames."

Woburn firefighters from Ladder 1, Ladder 2, Engine 3 and Engine 4, along with a Winchester Fire unit, extinguished the blaze quickly and cleared the scene by 7:30 p.m.

One firefighter was taken to Winchester Hospital with an unknown injury.

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Woburn Police arson investigators arrived on scene Tuesday night and examined the home, which suffered the most damage above a front room on the left side of the house, near the "electrical service."

According to investigators, several pots were found on a large table and contained "remnants of marijuana stalks." Three industrial-strength metal lights were on the ceiling, and a "tin-foil-like wrap" covered the walls, said police.

The officers found eight more marijuana plants hanging from the living room ceiling, reported police.

Although the fire was deemed to be "electrical," police noted that the electrical load in the marijuana "grow room" may have influenced the electrical fire.

shawn w September 06, 2012 at 02:48 PM
Now I know why all the firefighters were laughing when I drove by.
Kevin September 06, 2012 at 04:17 PM
oooops. should have gone to staple for power surge proctector or new power strip
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 04:36 PM
Very sorry to read of the injured firefighter. I wish he and his family nothing but the best. Referring to this article re the 'marijuana being grown': It is so comforting that the discovery, and subsequent removal, of these evil plants was made. Omigosh...had this 'devil weed' fallen into the hands of some 'dope smoking derelict,' we would all be in danger. Goodness gracious! Our very lives, our children, our dogs, and kitty cats may have all been at risk. Hot dang! But, on the other hand: I smoked my first joint in December, 1967, at the tender age of 21. Now, a mere 44 years later, I still smoke pot. I have never 'graduated' to 'harder' drugs. Nor, have I ever harmed anyone. I am living proof that this prohibitionist propaganda is a fallacy...a blatant lie. The worst experience I had with marijuana was spending 5 years in Federal Prison for a pot offense. While there, I watched armed bank robbers come and go in as little as 20 months. When I went to the parole board after more than 3 years 'behind the wall,' I pointed this out to the panel members. Their response: "You must understand that yours was a very serious offense." I laughed about that for another 2 years (as I still sat in prison)...then wrote my book: Shoulda Robbed a Bank. I hope you check it out.
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 04:37 PM
All card-carrying members of the DEA need to read: Shoulda Robbed a Bank Here is one of its reviews: 5.0 out of 5 stars... If David Sedaris had written 'Catcher in the Rye'..this would be it, June 30, 2012 Amazon Verified Purchase This review is from: Shoulda Robbed a Bank (Kindle Edition) I have never smoked pot in my life...nor do I ever care to. I read about this book in numerous Huffington Post comments. Thought I would read it because I know nothing about marijuana or the people involved with it. I am ecstatic that I did. Funny, Funny, Funny!!! The chapters are like short stories. Stories about unloading boats with helicopters, close encounters with law enforcement, traveling through the jungles of South America. The chapter about the author's first time smoking marijuana made me feel like I was with him...coughing. All of the characters were just a group of loveable, nice guys and girls. Not what I had been raised to believe...hysterical maniacs high on pot bent on death and mayhem. They were nothing like that. If you have ever read any of David Sedaris' books, and like them...you will love Shoulda Robbed a Bank. And the crazy things happening reminded me of Holden Caufield in 'Catcher in the Rye' and the way he staggered through life. The way the words are put together are like nothing I have ever heard. I am sure I will use many of the sayings found in this book just to dazzle my friends. A terrific read. I love this book.
Roth Gill September 06, 2012 at 07:45 PM
Yes, I agree that the war on "pot" is a overzealous....and if it were legal, perhaps people wouldn't be having unsafe grow-rooms that could catch on fire, also legalization would take a big bite out of the nasty cartels who seem to be using pot as their american cash cow. However, with that being said, it is still illegal.... albeit decriminalized for personal use. Hugh, I feel bad that you spent so many years in prison, however it sounds to me like you probably were doing more than "personal use" when you had your little business going. The problem with dealing with any illegal substance is that you are most likely dealing with people who are involved in other illegal activities. You may have been a "nice" dealer, however there are lots of not so nice dealers that do some not so nice things. Having an illegal operation means you leave yourself open to getting robbed. Having an illegal operation means whatever product you might be selling might be unsafe. Also, having an illegal business means that you are also not paying taxes....not my favorite thing to point out, but if every other REAL business person pays taxes, you should be too. I would be happy to read your book and I'm sure you have some wonderful "war stories" of shenanigans associated with your story. My point is, until it is legal or considered a "medicinal substance" and regulated like alcohol, you are participating in the same illegal activity as the rum-runners of prohibition.
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 08:21 PM
Roth Gill...You make several excellent points... Questions: 1) Are you in law enforcement? 2) If so, is this the information being handed down to the 'front line' by 'management'? I was involved in the marijuana trade for 14 years. I never saw this. The people I dealt with were honest and straight forward, We all came up through 'the ranks' together...meaning, we climbed from ounces to multi-tons as a unit. Integrity was the key criteria. When dealing in multi-tons of marijuana, huge amounts of cash were involved. No checks or credit cards were accepted. The bank robbers I met in prison averaged $1,800 per bank robbery. In my 'pot days,' I had been in a room with over 6 million dollars in cash. The only way to attain that level of transactions was through honesty. There was no other avenue. I wrote about this in my book: Shoulda Robbed a Bank I hope you check it out. Or, have I already said that? Regarding the 'rum-runners of prohibition,' weren't those the Kennedy's? And was not 'alcohol prohibition' later to be found unenforceable, unconstitutional, and downright a bogus bunch of crap. You cannot regulate morals. We live in a supposedly 'free' country. What you do in the privacy of your own home or campsite is none of my business. A million thanks for your comment.
Roth Gill September 06, 2012 at 09:37 PM
No, I am not in law-enforcement....human services. Although you were not directly involved with violent crimes associated with your "trade", odds are somewhere down the line, someone that you sold to was. Here's my thought... You sell 2lbs. to a respectable client, he then takes one pound and breaks them up into a bunch of smaller bags....we'll just say a bunch of 1/4's. He sells one to one of his close friends, another to someone else, and the last 2 go to himself. You don't know his close friends are breaking their 1/4's up and selling them as 1/8's. This goes fine until someone cuffs something and doesn't pay for it, or even worse, someone who is shady mugs them or breaks into their house to steal their stash or the cash that they are holding. It's not the POT that is bad it's the crimes associated with it. Prohibition was a bad idea and because of that bad idea, crime flourished. Pot being illegal is also bad idea, and crime associated with it is also flourishing. Believe me, if it is ever legalized, I'd probably be the first in line, but until then....I'll just have to wait for my next vacation to Amsterdam. (which has very good food and museum's as well) I hope you the best with your writing career.....as far as I know, they can't throw you in jail for exercising your free speech and making a few bucks off of it. ( at least for now :-) )
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Roth Gill...you have a WHOLE LOT of 'what if's'...'odds are'...'we'll just say'... in your comment. Granted, everyone on this planet is not 'just a nice guy.' I am not going to hide under my bed. There is really no way to respond to all of your conjectures... The point that we truly agree on is that 'prohibition was a bad idea...' It was a horrible idea...one that will never work in a country founded on personal liberty...or, anywhere that life means anything... As far as Amsterdam, a lad I have known for 40 years traveled there for the sole purpose of 'trying their weed.' When he returned, I asked his opinion... After several seconds of thought, his response: "I can get better in Boynton Beach, Florida." He is one of the characters in my book. You are right re 'exercising..free speech'...the statute of limitations ran out many years ago. Besides, I classified it as a novel. Question: What are 'human services'? Stay safe and happy.
shawn w September 06, 2012 at 10:14 PM
Thanks Woburn Patch for allowing this admitted pot dealer to voice his opinion.
Full Name September 06, 2012 at 10:44 PM
"Admitted pot dealer?" You make it sound like a bad thing. Clearly uninformed. The guy that sells you booze down at the local packey is more dangerous...
Roth Gill September 06, 2012 at 10:52 PM
Human services: taking care of the mentally ill, mentally retarded, elderly, homeless etc. Typically society's folks who have been forgotten or ignored and in many cases misunderstood.
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 11:35 PM
Full Name...thank you... Shawn w...where do you buy your prescription medication? You know, the pills that killed over 26,000 people in 2009? Deaths attributed to marijuana...not a single one in recorded history. We all need to get our priorities in order. This insane crap has gone on long enough. I look forward to your response.
FlyingTooLow September 06, 2012 at 11:40 PM
Roth Gill...may God bless you, Sir. I truly did not know what 'human services' meant. You have my deepest thanks and admiration.
Roth Gill September 07, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Thanks, and I admire your efforts to promote rational thinking and rational laws. I do hope that some day pot will simply be decriminalized and not considered "medicinal". Not many people need to beg their doctor's for a prescription to get themselves a 6 pack at the end of the day. I think the whole medical marijuana movement is a distraction and a way of avoiding that fact that government wants it to be regulated. That's all we need for society....possibly handing the pot market from the cartels to the pharmaceutical industry. Until then, play by the rules, stay under the radar, write your politicians, VOTE, and.....in the privacy of your homes, enjoy your brownies. Good luck FlyingTooLow, keep writing!
FlyingTooLow September 07, 2012 at 01:32 PM
As to voting, I cannot. Although I have been 'crime free' for more than 30 years. How many non-violent, drug offenders fall into this category? Millions. I am a major supporter of RE-legalizing marijuana. The prohibition laws fly in the face of everything our country was founded upon. As to the 'pharmaceutical industry,' why is it not being prosecuted? In 2009, 26,000 deaths from prescription medicines. Deaths caused by marijuana...not a single one in recorded history. Several years ago, I had surgery on my right shoulder. Pain medication was prescribed..."take one capsule every 4 hours." I took one capsule. I was down for over 20 hours. When I came to, I felt like I had been hit by a truck. The next time I felt discomfort, I smoked a small amount of marijuana ...pain gone, no after effects. I threw the pills out. A million thanks for your comments. I wish you nothing but the very best, Hugh Yonn
Chris Murphy September 07, 2012 at 08:26 PM
Shawn W, this is a "free" country and folks are entitled to their own views and opinions.


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