Dr. Jan Widerman, a 65-year-old pediatrician from Bucks County, Philadelphia is in police custody after he was found to be running “an elaborate marijuana growing operation” in his backyard.
According to a report by the Philadelphia Daily News, the pediatrician is facing charges for growing marijuana in his backyard. The discovery was made by a group of firefighters who were responding to a fire in the garage of Dr.Widerman’s residence on February 13. According to reports, a car parked in the pediatrician’s garage caught fire. He called the emergency services to help douse the fire. However, the firemen were shocked to see marijuana being grown within the premises when they were attempting to evacuate the residents and animals from inside the home. Charles Pinkerton from the fire department had the following to say.
“One of the firefighters, while doing a room to room search found two rooms that had been converted for the purpose of growing marijuana”.
A press release issued by the Northampton Township Police reads as follows.
“In the process of evacuating the residents and animals from inside the property, personnel discovered a sophisticated marijuana growing operation inside the converted garage bays.”
Following the discovery, the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office approved a search warrant of the home at the end of which a substantial amount of marijuana plants “in various stages of development” were found inside the home. Authorities also discovered special electric glowing lamps, fertilizers and even an exhaust system – all of which were used to grow the plants. In another part of the home, they recovered marijuana in bulk – which was kept along with packing equipment and weighing scales. The home was allegedly filled with various other drug paraphernalia. Apart from these, officials also discovered $13,000 in cash from the home of the pediatrician. Officials have seized this money, which will be forwarded to the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office.
“There were ventilation systems, grow lights, heat warming pads, in addition to that numerous gardening equipment,” a senior official said when describing the pediatrician’s set up.
Meanwhile, Widerman was arraigned last Monday, before he posted a $100,000 unsecured bail.
“He is a doctor’s doctor. He is there for his patients 24/7. He treats them both medically and holistically. He treats the whole person. People love him,” according to his attorney Louis Busico.
He also adds that the pediatrician has been practicing in the area for decades and that he has never had a blemish in his record. Police officials, however, disagree and allege that Widerman poses a danger to the community. They are also questioning where the marijuana that was being grown at the residence eventually reached. There are also questions being raised as to why a pediatrician was growing significant amounts of marijuana in his backyard. Apart from Dr.Widerman, his wife too has been charged in the case.
A preliminary hearing pertaining to the case is scheduled for March 10.
Incidentally, the discovery of marijuana from the pediatrician’s home comes just a day after The Inquisitr reported about Eric Holder, the former U.S. Attorney General saying that marijuana should be put into a less restrictive category– separate from the Schedule I drug which it is labelled as currently.
“You know, we treat marijuana in the same way that we treat heroin now, and that clearly is not appropriate,” he said. “So at a minimum, I think Congress needs to do that. Then I think we need to look at what happens in Colorado and what happens in Washington.”
Under Schedule I, marijuana is labeled a dangerous substance with no medical use. Australia, too, recently passed a law that legalizes medical marijuana – only for people with painful and chronic diseases. The law there now allows cannabis to be legally grown for both medical and scientific purposes.
[Image Via Pixabay]